Saints' England contingent to get 'outside' help when it comes to taking penalties

Rickie Lambert

Rickie Lambert

First published in Sport

England manager Roy Hodgson is considering employing the services of a sports psychologist to help his players conquer their perennial penalty shoot-out jitters.

The Three Lions' spot-kick defeat to Italy at the 2012 European Championships - under Hodgson's supervision - was their sixth in seven attempts at the mini-game in major tournaments.

So as preparations continue in earnest for England's forthcoming World Cup campaign in Brazil, he is especially keen to see those players who suffer from what he calls a fear of "the next morning's headlines" cured.

The veteran coach, who tromorrow names a squad to face Denmark in a Wembley friendly, confirmed players would be intensely drilled in scoring from 12 yards at their pre-finals training camp in Portugal, but conceded bringing a professional sports psychologist along could be similarly effective.

He said: "We are considering the possibility of inviting someone with us but it would have to be someone accepted by the group.

"I'm not sure shipping someone in to give the players a lecture will work. It will have to be somebody who gets to know them.

"I think there's a possibility that we should just be encouraging players to know their penalty, to practise their penalty.

"We might have one or two very confident penalty-takers, but there are others who are a bit less confident and it's a matter of how we get to them.

"We need to know that when they go up they are as well prepared as they can be.

"It will be about their character, their confidence and their ability to block out the next morning's headlines.

"If a psychologist can find a way to block that out then we'd be very, very happy."

Saints striker Rickie Lambert is one man who shouldn't need any help when it comes to converting penalties.

He has never missed from the spot during his four and a half years for Saints, and last missed a penalty while playing for Bristol Rovers in February 2009.

Comments (35)

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7:48am Tue 25 Feb 14

Dubai-saints89 says...

instead of hiring somebody from outside why don't they just hire the expert himself Sir Ricke Lambert..?
instead of hiring somebody from outside why don't they just hire the expert himself Sir Ricke Lambert..? Dubai-saints89
  • Score: 18

7:55am Tue 25 Feb 14

Outside of the Box says...

Matt Le Tiss should be hired as the penalty taking coach.
Matt Le Tiss should be hired as the penalty taking coach. Outside of the Box
  • Score: 19

8:09am Tue 25 Feb 14

Seedhouse the Unrepentant says...

The fact Roy is concerned about penalty takers is good for Rickie. He should be too, I've been to three tournaments and come home three times following a penalty shoot out loss.

If Rickie isn't named tomorrow then he's not going barring a glut of injuries, if he is named the dream is still on.
The fact Roy is concerned about penalty takers is good for Rickie. He should be too, I've been to three tournaments and come home three times following a penalty shoot out loss. If Rickie isn't named tomorrow then he's not going barring a glut of injuries, if he is named the dream is still on. Seedhouse the Unrepentant
  • Score: 13

8:52am Tue 25 Feb 14

red&whitemachine says...

Seedhouse the Unrepentant wrote:
The fact Roy is concerned about penalty takers is good for Rickie. He should be too, I've been to three tournaments and come home three times following a penalty shoot out loss.

If Rickie isn't named tomorrow then he's not going barring a glut of injuries, if he is named the dream is still on.
Given your poor record at tournaments, I hope you are not going to Brazil this summer!!!
[quote][p][bold]Seedhouse the Unrepentant[/bold] wrote: The fact Roy is concerned about penalty takers is good for Rickie. He should be too, I've been to three tournaments and come home three times following a penalty shoot out loss. If Rickie isn't named tomorrow then he's not going barring a glut of injuries, if he is named the dream is still on.[/p][/quote]Given your poor record at tournaments, I hope you are not going to Brazil this summer!!! red&whitemachine
  • Score: 8

9:32am Tue 25 Feb 14

Seedhouse the Unrepentant says...

red&whitemachine wrote:
Seedhouse the Unrepentant wrote:
The fact Roy is concerned about penalty takers is good for Rickie. He should be too, I've been to three tournaments and come home three times following a penalty shoot out loss.

If Rickie isn't named tomorrow then he's not going barring a glut of injuries, if he is named the dream is still on.
Given your poor record at tournaments, I hope you are not going to Brazil this summer!!!
One of them was Italia 90 - second best performance ever!
[quote][p][bold]red&whitemachine[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Seedhouse the Unrepentant[/bold] wrote: The fact Roy is concerned about penalty takers is good for Rickie. He should be too, I've been to three tournaments and come home three times following a penalty shoot out loss. If Rickie isn't named tomorrow then he's not going barring a glut of injuries, if he is named the dream is still on.[/p][/quote]Given your poor record at tournaments, I hope you are not going to Brazil this summer!!![/p][/quote]One of them was Italia 90 - second best performance ever! Seedhouse the Unrepentant
  • Score: 7

9:33am Tue 25 Feb 14

Positively4thStreet says...

If Rickie goes,all they need to do is add the rest of the squads names to his by deed poll,and then just send him up for each penalty.Sorted!
If Rickie goes,all they need to do is add the rest of the squads names to his by deed poll,and then just send him up for each penalty.Sorted! Positively4thStreet
  • Score: 6

9:49am Tue 25 Feb 14

Clever Dick says...

Or they could get some of those true to life face masks and get in a huddle before every spot kick and quickly change Rickies appearance to one of the other players. The only problem is they might smell a rat when he bursts the net 5 times in a row.
Or they could get some of those true to life face masks and get in a huddle before every spot kick and quickly change Rickies appearance to one of the other players. The only problem is they might smell a rat when he bursts the net 5 times in a row. Clever Dick
  • Score: 5

9:53am Tue 25 Feb 14

Clever Dick says...

Seriously though why does it need a psychologist. Just show them videos of SRL and MLT in action. Pick your spot and hit it hard. Top corners are favourite as keepers always dive lower rather than higher. If it hits the side netting a properly struck penalty virtually never fails.
Seriously though why does it need a psychologist. Just show them videos of SRL and MLT in action. Pick your spot and hit it hard. Top corners are favourite as keepers always dive lower rather than higher. If it hits the side netting a properly struck penalty virtually never fails. Clever Dick
  • Score: 5

9:59am Tue 25 Feb 14

miltonarcher says...

Hammer it down the middle, simple.
Hammer it down the middle, simple. miltonarcher
  • Score: 0

10:02am Tue 25 Feb 14

red&whitemachine says...

Seedhouse the Unrepentant wrote:
red&whitemachine wrote:
Seedhouse the Unrepentant wrote:
The fact Roy is concerned about penalty takers is good for Rickie. He should be too, I've been to three tournaments and come home three times following a penalty shoot out loss.

If Rickie isn't named tomorrow then he's not going barring a glut of injuries, if he is named the dream is still on.
Given your poor record at tournaments, I hope you are not going to Brazil this summer!!!
One of them was Italia 90 - second best performance ever!
OK, in that case you may go!
[quote][p][bold]Seedhouse the Unrepentant[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]red&whitemachine[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Seedhouse the Unrepentant[/bold] wrote: The fact Roy is concerned about penalty takers is good for Rickie. He should be too, I've been to three tournaments and come home three times following a penalty shoot out loss. If Rickie isn't named tomorrow then he's not going barring a glut of injuries, if he is named the dream is still on.[/p][/quote]Given your poor record at tournaments, I hope you are not going to Brazil this summer!!![/p][/quote]One of them was Italia 90 - second best performance ever![/p][/quote]OK, in that case you may go! red&whitemachine
  • Score: 4

10:13am Tue 25 Feb 14

killared says...

England will not pass the group stage anyway we have Uruguay who are really good and Italy and they are very strong in our group !. Yes we have some youngster coming through but England are left behind BIG TIME !. Nation like Germany, Spain, Italy, Holland, France, Croatia and Belgium are miles ahead of us in producing young talent for their national side. It's because of the EPL if we are well seeded in qualifier if it wasn't for that we would be blitz by these nations in qualifier.
England will not pass the group stage anyway we have Uruguay who are really good and Italy and they are very strong in our group !. Yes we have some youngster coming through but England are left behind BIG TIME !. Nation like Germany, Spain, Italy, Holland, France, Croatia and Belgium are miles ahead of us in producing young talent for their national side. It's because of the EPL if we are well seeded in qualifier if it wasn't for that we would be blitz by these nations in qualifier. killared
  • Score: -9

10:23am Tue 25 Feb 14

Dubai-saints89 says...

killared wrote:
England will not pass the group stage anyway we have Uruguay who are really good and Italy and they are very strong in our group !. Yes we have some youngster coming through but England are left behind BIG TIME !. Nation like Germany, Spain, Italy, Holland, France, Croatia and Belgium are miles ahead of us in producing young talent for their national side. It's because of the EPL if we are well seeded in qualifier if it wasn't for that we would be blitz by these nations in qualifier.
squad hasn't even been picked yet and you're already knocking off England. i bet you were one of those who said England wouldn't qualify to the WC! Italy are a good nation but there not consistent, Uruguay have an old squad and will be relying way too much on Suarez and cavani. Cost Rica SHOULD not be a problem. i agree Spain, Germany and Holland are on another level but they are also beatable. have a little faith.
[quote][p][bold]killared[/bold] wrote: England will not pass the group stage anyway we have Uruguay who are really good and Italy and they are very strong in our group !. Yes we have some youngster coming through but England are left behind BIG TIME !. Nation like Germany, Spain, Italy, Holland, France, Croatia and Belgium are miles ahead of us in producing young talent for their national side. It's because of the EPL if we are well seeded in qualifier if it wasn't for that we would be blitz by these nations in qualifier.[/p][/quote]squad hasn't even been picked yet and you're already knocking off England. i bet you were one of those who said England wouldn't qualify to the WC! Italy are a good nation but there not consistent, Uruguay have an old squad and will be relying way too much on Suarez and cavani. Cost Rica SHOULD not be a problem. i agree Spain, Germany and Holland are on another level but they are also beatable. have a little faith. Dubai-saints89
  • Score: 2

10:42am Tue 25 Feb 14

killared says...

@Dubai-saints89

Technically, Tactically these nation are miles ahead of us. Even if we pick the best team based on performance we would lose against them. At the moment England produce average or good players it's been a long time since we produce a world class player last time we did was a guy called Bale and he's not even English ! Uruguay and Costa rica will play their guts out because it's like they are playing at home. Don't get me wrong ill support any Saints player who goes to Brazil but since the Euro 96 has not produce much in International level the media hype the team so much that everybody believe that we can beat the world best .
@Dubai-saints89 Technically, Tactically these nation are miles ahead of us. Even if we pick the best team based on performance we would lose against them. At the moment England produce average or good players it's been a long time since we produce a world class player last time we did was a guy called Bale and he's not even English ! Uruguay and Costa rica will play their guts out because it's like they are playing at home. Don't get me wrong ill support any Saints player who goes to Brazil but since the Euro 96 has not produce much in International level the media hype the team so much that everybody believe that we can beat the world best . killared
  • Score: -2

11:33am Tue 25 Feb 14

Confucious says...

The problem of course with penalty taking in big matches is all in the mind.

No reasonably relaxed professional footballer should miss a penalty - but as extreme anxiety builds up as he walks towards the spot in a crucial game - knowing that many millions are watching and missing could bring career-blighting ridicule down on his head - well, the racing mind can simply over-ride the natural, unthinking and highly practised physical co-ordination that the player normally instinctively displays.

I employed numerous psychologists to try and overcome this problem in my day with absolutely no success - until that is McCallan came along.

The MaCallan method is centred upon getting the mind to relax and on foxing the goalkeeper by creating both unpredictable footwork on the run-in and unpredictable eye movements which give no hint to the keeper as to where the ball will be placed.

The recommended McCallan is the 10 year old vintage malt. Two doubles will normally suffice, but a quarter bottle would be advised for a World Cup shoot-out.
The problem of course with penalty taking in big matches is all in the mind. No reasonably relaxed professional footballer should miss a penalty - but as extreme anxiety builds up as he walks towards the spot in a crucial game - knowing that many millions are watching and missing could bring career-blighting ridicule down on his head - well, the racing mind can simply over-ride the natural, unthinking and highly practised physical co-ordination that the player normally instinctively displays. I employed numerous psychologists to try and overcome this problem in my day with absolutely no success - until that is McCallan came along. The MaCallan method is centred upon getting the mind to relax and on foxing the goalkeeper by creating both unpredictable footwork on the run-in and unpredictable eye movements which give no hint to the keeper as to where the ball will be placed. The recommended McCallan is the 10 year old vintage malt. Two doubles will normally suffice, but a quarter bottle would be advised for a World Cup shoot-out. Confucious
  • Score: 7

12:06pm Tue 25 Feb 14

OSPREYSAINT says...

miltonarcher wrote:
Hammer it down the middle, simple.
Never worked against Tommy Forepast, he just stayed rooted to the spot, the ball would have hit him in a central area!

I came to the conclusion earlier this season that we weren't being awarded any penalties because the result was a foregone conclusion and unfair on the opposition?
[quote][p][bold]miltonarcher[/bold] wrote: Hammer it down the middle, simple.[/p][/quote]Never worked against Tommy Forepast, he just stayed rooted to the spot, the ball would have hit him in a central area! I came to the conclusion earlier this season that we weren't being awarded any penalties because the result was a foregone conclusion and unfair on the opposition? OSPREYSAINT
  • Score: 3

1:13pm Tue 25 Feb 14

03alpe01 says...

What's the point in this? They don't do penalty shoot outs in World Cup group games ;)
What's the point in this? They don't do penalty shoot outs in World Cup group games ;) 03alpe01
  • Score: 4

1:39pm Tue 25 Feb 14

el caballo santos101 says...

why don't England hire Krueger from us to sort the players minds out, as confucious said for the most part taking a penalty is in the mind. with Krueger`s expertise in leadership and motivating people he could be the perfect person for the job, Canada just won the Olympic gold with his help.
I`m sure we would let England borrow him for a small fee. maybe we could do a deal, the FA can borrow our expert and in return they keep clutterbrain away from our games. worth a try.
why don't England hire Krueger from us to sort the players minds out, as confucious said for the most part taking a penalty is in the mind. with Krueger`s expertise in leadership and motivating people he could be the perfect person for the job, Canada just won the Olympic gold with his help. I`m sure we would let England borrow him for a small fee. maybe we could do a deal, the FA can borrow our expert and in return they keep clutterbrain away from our games. worth a try. el caballo santos101
  • Score: 0

1:52pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Positively4thStreet says...

03alpe01 wrote:
What's the point in this? They don't do penalty shoot outs in World Cup group games ;)
Ha ha..now now!!
[quote][p][bold]03alpe01[/bold] wrote: What's the point in this? They don't do penalty shoot outs in World Cup group games ;)[/p][/quote]Ha ha..now now!! Positively4thStreet
  • Score: 2

2:12pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Costa Baz says...

For me, those players that don't normally take spot kicks, just need to work on 2 different penalties, so that if they are needed in a shoot out, they already have a clear idea as to where they will put the ball.
Then, practice, practice, practice and hope those that are needed are mentally strong enough to succeed.
For me, those players that don't normally take spot kicks, just need to work on 2 different penalties, so that if they are needed in a shoot out, they already have a clear idea as to where they will put the ball. Then, practice, practice, practice and hope those that are needed are mentally strong enough to succeed. Costa Baz
  • Score: 2

3:52pm Tue 25 Feb 14

saint in dordogne says...

I've played in two penalty shoot outs and was 4th taker both times and believe me I have never been so nervous in my life and I think that a psychologist would be useful .
Didn't need to be nervous anyway cause we lost both times before I even got to take one and the other players weren't even English so I don't know how they missed.
I've played in two penalty shoot outs and was 4th taker both times and believe me I have never been so nervous in my life and I think that a psychologist would be useful . Didn't need to be nervous anyway cause we lost both times before I even got to take one and the other players weren't even English so I don't know how they missed. saint in dordogne
  • Score: 1

4:08pm Tue 25 Feb 14

redsnapper says...

Never mind the pen problem, change WOY his style of play is awful, very slow build up and the verylow pass success rate of England teams compared with that of Spain and other top teams.lmost guarantees elimination in the group stage.
Never mind the pen problem, change WOY his style of play is awful, very slow build up and the verylow pass success rate of England teams compared with that of Spain and other top teams.lmost guarantees elimination in the group stage. redsnapper
  • Score: -4

4:22pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Rocket 1 says...

Easy, just put Grobbelar in Goal and put a Bet on he goes the wrong way...
Easy, just put Grobbelar in Goal and put a Bet on he goes the wrong way... Rocket 1
  • Score: 1

4:50pm Tue 25 Feb 14

aldermoorboy says...

Take a long run up, make sure where you want to place it, hit it very hard, act like a robot and you will never miss and have a record like mine.

Mind you I never played under such pressure, as our largest crowd ever was one guy walking his dog, even then he only stayed for 5 minutes.
Take a long run up, make sure where you want to place it, hit it very hard, act like a robot and you will never miss and have a record like mine. Mind you I never played under such pressure, as our largest crowd ever was one guy walking his dog, even then he only stayed for 5 minutes. aldermoorboy
  • Score: 1

7:37pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Baddesley Bill says...

Strange how our latest clutch of hyper-critics have not posted to tell us that Lambert has not got what it takes to take penalties....is there a game on tonight?

Come on Accrington
Strange how our latest clutch of hyper-critics have not posted to tell us that Lambert has not got what it takes to take penalties....is there a game on tonight? Come on Accrington Baddesley Bill
  • Score: 1

7:52pm Tue 25 Feb 14

angus mc coatup says...

Baddesley Bill wrote:
Strange how our latest clutch of hyper-critics have not posted to tell us that Lambert has not got what it takes to take penalties....is there a game on tonight?

Come on Accrington
He's rubbish at penalties.....I saw him nearly miss once !
[quote][p][bold]Baddesley Bill[/bold] wrote: Strange how our latest clutch of hyper-critics have not posted to tell us that Lambert has not got what it takes to take penalties....is there a game on tonight? Come on Accrington[/p][/quote]He's rubbish at penalties.....I saw him nearly miss once ! angus mc coatup
  • Score: 0

8:32pm Tue 25 Feb 14

OSPREYSAINT says...

03alpe01 wrote:
What's the point in this? They don't do penalty shoot outs in World Cup group games ;)
Unlike the Saints there is a chance that England might get one or two Penalties in open play.
[quote][p][bold]03alpe01[/bold] wrote: What's the point in this? They don't do penalty shoot outs in World Cup group games ;)[/p][/quote]Unlike the Saints there is a chance that England might get one or two Penalties in open play. OSPREYSAINT
  • Score: 0

8:42pm Tue 25 Feb 14

st1halo says...

Baddesley Bill wrote:
Strange how our latest clutch of hyper-critics have not posted to tell us that Lambert has not got what it takes to take penalties....is there a game on tonight?

Come on Accrington
And Come on Wycombe!! They can drop the skates down if they win and Pompey don't. heehee

STID
[quote][p][bold]Baddesley Bill[/bold] wrote: Strange how our latest clutch of hyper-critics have not posted to tell us that Lambert has not got what it takes to take penalties....is there a game on tonight? Come on Accrington[/p][/quote]And Come on Wycombe!! They can drop the skates down if they win and Pompey don't. heehee STID st1halo
  • Score: -1

9:21pm Tue 25 Feb 14

north wales saint 2 says...

If Rickie Adam J Rod and Luke are in any England side in this world cup i am sure they would all be able to dispatch penalties.What bothers me is that any team Roy is able to field would not be good enough to get to that situation in the first place.
If Rickie Adam J Rod and Luke are in any England side in this world cup i am sure they would all be able to dispatch penalties.What bothers me is that any team Roy is able to field would not be good enough to get to that situation in the first place. north wales saint 2
  • Score: 1

9:43pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Seedhouse the Unrepentant says...

Bloody Beattie :(
Bloody Beattie :( Seedhouse the Unrepentant
  • Score: 2

9:48pm Tue 25 Feb 14

st1halo says...

Seedhouse the Unrepentant wrote:
Bloody Beattie :(
Innit :-(
[quote][p][bold]Seedhouse the Unrepentant[/bold] wrote: Bloody Beattie :([/p][/quote]Innit :-( st1halo
  • Score: 1

9:54pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Seedhouse the Unrepentant says...

st1halo wrote:
Seedhouse the Unrepentant wrote:
Bloody Beattie :(
Innit :-(
Wasted opportunity to see them go 22nd. At least Chesterfield will wallop them live on Sky.
[quote][p][bold]st1halo[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Seedhouse the Unrepentant[/bold] wrote: Bloody Beattie :([/p][/quote]Innit :-([/p][/quote]Wasted opportunity to see them go 22nd. At least Chesterfield will wallop them live on Sky. Seedhouse the Unrepentant
  • Score: 1

10:00pm Tue 25 Feb 14

el caballo santos101 says...

so with manure losing 2-0 to olympiakos tonight despite having 60% possession, I take it our new expert friends will be telling us that moyes has been `found out` and that manure are desperate for a new striker because they aren't converting enough of their chances.
well I suppose paying £300k a week and £25mill+ for players doesn't guarantee success, so those asking that we spend big would do well to remember that!
so with manure losing 2-0 to olympiakos tonight despite having 60% possession, I take it our new expert friends will be telling us that moyes has been `found out` and that manure are desperate for a new striker because they aren't converting enough of their chances. well I suppose paying £300k a week and £25mill+ for players doesn't guarantee success, so those asking that we spend big would do well to remember that! el caballo santos101
  • Score: 4

10:38pm Tue 25 Feb 14

justaSaintsfan says...

Presumably players in the England squad should already be routinely practicing penalty taking when training for international matches anyway, as it would seem rather too late to start doing so before the World Cup's latter stages get under way in Brazil in only a few months.

England's past penalty shoot out record is now irrelevant, as what's done is done.

Roy Hodgson is obviously doing his utmost to give England a chance of proceeding further in the competition, should the need arise. If a psychologist can help, then so be it. Let us hope the England manager succeeds in improving the quality of England's penalty taking!
Presumably players in the England squad should already be routinely practicing penalty taking when training for international matches anyway, as it would seem rather too late to start doing so before the World Cup's latter stages get under way in Brazil in only a few months. England's past penalty shoot out record is now irrelevant, as what's done is done. Roy Hodgson is obviously doing his utmost to give England a chance of proceeding further in the competition, should the need arise. If a psychologist can help, then so be it. Let us hope the England manager succeeds in improving the quality of England's penalty taking! justaSaintsfan
  • Score: 2

7:52am Wed 26 Feb 14

BracknellSaint says...

north wales saint 2 wrote:
If Rickie Adam J Rod and Luke are in any England side in this world cup i am sure they would all be able to dispatch penalties.What bothers me is that any team Roy is able to field would not be good enough to get to that situation in the first place.
As much as I love what he brings to us, not quite so sure Jay would be nailed on to score from 12 yards....he has a habit of missing from that distance,when given time to think..Much better goal scoring when it's a snap shot, or a ball whipped in..
Think that he will improve with age, but needs to work on his general finishing and composure...he will really be a hell of a player when he can improve that side of his game..
[quote][p][bold]north wales saint 2[/bold] wrote: If Rickie Adam J Rod and Luke are in any England side in this world cup i am sure they would all be able to dispatch penalties.What bothers me is that any team Roy is able to field would not be good enough to get to that situation in the first place.[/p][/quote]As much as I love what he brings to us, not quite so sure Jay would be nailed on to score from 12 yards....he has a habit of missing from that distance,when given time to think..Much better goal scoring when it's a snap shot, or a ball whipped in.. Think that he will improve with age, but needs to work on his general finishing and composure...he will really be a hell of a player when he can improve that side of his game.. BracknellSaint
  • Score: 0

1:11pm Wed 26 Feb 14

lionheart says...

Surely England's penalty coach should be Matt Le Tissier.
Surely England's penalty coach should be Matt Le Tissier. lionheart
  • Score: -1

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