Karl Digbeu

Karl Digbeu

  • Coached at Loyola University’s Advance Soccer Camp
  • Coached at Mark Mettrick’s (Loyola University Head Coach) Soccer School
  • Coached at DC United Advance Soccer Camp

Playing:

Karl spent the early stages of his life playing in Ivory Coast prior to his move to France; he then spent two years playing in Paris before attending high school in the United States. At Watkins Mill High School, he earned a four year Varsity Letter and was a pivotal part in the team’s regional final appearance in 2006. He earned All-State honors as a senior and played for the DC United Under 20 squad which came together to help land him at Keystone College, where he played for one season before transferring to Loyola University Maryland.

The midfielder, at Loyola, appeared in numerous games throughout his first season, Started the two first games against Fordham and Hartwick at the Black and Decker Soccer Classic, logging 77 and 66 minutes in the games. He would go on throughout the season to give the team a much needed creative spark whenever needed.

After College, the speedy midfielder had a spell in France with Villemomble Sport Football, but due to injuries his pursuit of professional football was cut short. His international, collegiate and professional experience with football has permitted him to be a valuable asset to the many teams he has coached.

 

Coaches Corner:

Coach Karl believes that the most rewarding accomplishment in this game is to see a team, from top to bottom, attaining its goal through hard work, unity, humility, and consistency. For this cause, he is much more interested in the methodology aspect of the game in order to have an efficacious team. He is driven to get into his preparations to best prepare his players to attain their goals and to be successful.  For this reason he really embraces working with a team by setting up the expectation as the coach. His focus is to bring the best of each one of his players, and get their individual qualities to work as a group.  In this same process, it will also help them to develop others skills as leadership, communication, solidarity, loyalty, and respect.

 

 From his years of experience as a player and coach, he believes in a possession style of play as opposed to a direct style with long airballs. The possession style emphasizes the control of the ball through many short and quick passes with good movements on and off the ball while looking for a weakness in the opponent defense in order to score. The players should always remain focus and discipline by moving the ball sideways or backwards if necessary, and not lose sight of the main objective which is to score.  All training exercises should always be consistent with this philosophy where players will also have to be able to freely express themselves and make their own decisions without much restraint from the coach. His players including the goal keeper must be comfortable with the ball in their feet and must feel confident and have the desire to try to possess the ball even under pressure. You will always hear him repetitively say to his players “You must take pride on your passes and make sure you do not give the ball away but connect your passes. Possessing the ball is the best way to defend. The ball is our toy and we are not allowed to share it with anybody but our own teammates during each match. Coach Karl believes that the early a kid understands this philosophy throughout his development as a youth, the better it will be for him in the long run. Futbol is a game that constantly changes, which means throughout their development phase, players need to be exposed to environments without restrictions so they can learn how to think for themselves, become crafty, and make changes to solve any problems as they come during a match. Coach Karl strongly believes that a coach can’t ever teach a player how to be crafty or how to improvise a play, but a coach can surely create the environment to help the player attain these skills.

 

For Coach Karl futbol is not the most important thing but human relationships are much stronger. He enjoys having team bonding in order for his players to interact with the coach and each other’s more frequently. The closer the relationship is within a group, the greater is the result coming out of the group. This is very important for a team because it helps the players to be united, loyal, and it brings them together. Coach Karl believes that as a coach, it is necessary for him to find a way to be connected to his players and know them very well. Based on the nature of each one of his players, he thinks that it is key for the coach to become a friend, a big brother, and a leader, all at the same time. Coach Karl accepts as true that all players will not be top players but they will surely become men and women someday, and this sport can help them to develop skills that will help them for the rest of their lives. 

 

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