Steve Kerr drawing inspiration from World Cup: ‘That’s the way in which we wish to play’

Did you catch the third objective scored by Brazil towards South Korea? Warriors coach Steve Kerr did. As did all the Warriors’ crew. 

Kerr made positive of it.

“What a spectacular goal,” Kerr instructed FOX Sports activities. “What I liked about that one was the ball movement. That’s the way we want to play. I wanted our guys to see that and try to replicate it.”

It was classic Samba soccer. Brazil’s Richarlison managed a weak clear by the South Korean protection with one, two, three juggles of the ball on his head and two extra on his proper foot earlier than flicking it between two defenders to Marquinho ready on the high of the penalty field. Richarlison then minimize to the objective however let Marquinho’s one-touch return go scoot by means of him to Silva, whereas Richarlison’s defender peeled off after the ball. 

Too late. 

Silva slotted one other one-touch go again to a large open Richarlison, who calmly tucked the ball into the decrease left nook.

The clip of the objective was a part of the Warriors’ preparation to face the Indiana Pacers on Monday night time. They did not get the identical end result because the Brazilians, falling to an undermanned Indiana squad led by rookie Andrew Nembhard, who put on a show of his own, however that will not deter Kerr from persevering with to look at each minute of each World Cup match that he can, each as a fan of the game and as a prospector on the lookout for tactical or stylistic parts he can incorporate into his sport plans.

“I do love watching set pieces because it does remind me of ATOs (after time-out plays), side out-of-bounds plays, late-game stuff,” Kerr stated. “There are a lot of similarities when you look at what teams are doing. And I actually read, I don’t remember who, but that a European soccer coach was doing the same thing in reverse — that he was watching NBA games and looking at ATOs for set piece ideas.”

Kerr’s soccer profession did not transcend sixth grade as a midfielder for the AYSO Condors within the Pacific Palisades, however he is been a lifelong fan and acknowledges that the spacing, footwork and creativity of the 2 sports activities mirror one another. 

“There are a lot of similarities, for sure, especially in how to attack,” he stated. “I love basketball players who played soccer. I think they’re such a great connection. You can see the influence. (Manu) Ginobili, Toni Kukoc, (Steve) Nash — they saw angles that they might otherwise wouldn’t have if they hadn’t played so much soccer.”

Kerr turned a fan of Liverpool within the English Premier League when the crew acquired Egyptian star Mo Salah. Kerr’s late father, Malcolm, was a college professor who specialised within the Center East and Arab world, and the household hung out residing in Egypt throughout Kerr’s youth. The Warriors coach was really born in Beirut, Lebanon, earlier than his father took a place at UCLA and the household settled within the Palisades. 

Kerr was on the College of Arizona when his father returned to the Center East to function president of the American College of Beirut. 

Kerr’s father was assassinated in 1984.

“I watched the 2018 World Cup really closely and then started watching Liverpool because I liked Mo Salah,” he stated. “They became my team just because of my affection for him. I lived in Egypt for a few years growing up, so I kind of have a soft spot for Egypt. So after that World Cup, I started watching the Premier League every weekend. The quality of play is so incredible.”

That fandom led Kerr to go to the Liverpool coaching facility earlier this yr to look at the crew prepare and have lunch with The Reds’ supervisor, Jürgen Klopp. One among his offseason neighbors in San Diego, Andy Kohlberg, is president and half proprietor of RCD Mallorca, a crew in Spain’s La Liga. Kerr and his spouse, Margot, visited Mallorca on trip in September, took in a sport with Kohlberg, and met with the crew.   

“It was awesome,” Kerr stated. “They’re renovating the stadium. They’ve been a team that’s been relegated a couple of times. I think they were second division when they bought the team, but they’re really building the club well and having an excellent season so far. To visit and see what they’re building there and how some of these soccer clubs are going about their business is really fun.”

Whereas Kerr appreciates the Brazilians’ artistry, and he rooted for Staff USA till it was eradicated by the Netherlands within the spherical of 16, there isn’t a doubt who he’s pulling for within the match now: Morocco.

“Are you kidding me?” he laughed. “At this stage, they are the Cinderella story. They’re the team in the NCAA tourney that no one picked and somehow has won the first two or three games. Morocco is going to be in the Elite 8! How did this happen? How cool is that? I realize it’s highly unlikely, but I’d love to see them keep going.”

His daughter, Maddy, has tried to assist him along with his tactical evaluation of World Cup play.

“She texted me during the USA game,” he stated. “She goes, ‘I don’t know soccer that well, but it seems like the Dutch’s strategy is to let the two guys in the man buns dribble all the way up the field knowing they can’t hurt us.'”

Kerr laughed. Do not search for the Warriors to undertake that tactic. 

“‘The Two Man-Bun Guys,'” he stated. “But it was true. We weren’t getting good looks at all.”

Ric Bucher is an NBA author for FOX Sports activities. He beforehand wrote for Bleacher Report, ESPN The Journal and The Washington Publish and has written two books, “Rebound,” on NBA ahead Brian Grant’s battle with younger onset Parkinson’s, and “Yao: A Life In Two Worlds.” He additionally has a each day podcast, “On The Ball with Ric Bucher.” Observe him on Twitter @RicBucher.

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