Bringing the game to life #Euro2020

Updated: Jul 3

Relive every moment, every goal and replicate the worlds best with team and player challenges. Replay those golden moments, think like Harry Kane in front of goal and creatively solve midfield problems like Kante. Take tour players to a new level as they play a game within a game for this years #Euro2020 with MatchPlay Cards. Let’s go!


Why do players come to training? To play the game! Take players to a whole new world with team challenges representative of the top countries as they battle to find a way to win through the group stages onto the knock out rounds.

As we weave challenges and problems into our game design, we can 'nudge' our players into having to adapt and #ChangeTheGame, promoting players to identify the information available to make a decision and execute an action. It is important we do this by playing the game. Players are most infused with creativity when they have the feeling of play. It has hard to be creative when you are being judged!

You could play each game as a best of 3 series, challenging players to win more than once and giving them the ownership of reflecting on the action before battling again. Smaller numbers per team and smaller higher frequency games give players countless opportunities to discover and explore the possibilities the game presents – encouraging creative responses.

“If the players have some ownership of what’s going on then that's going to help them make better decisions on the field and also buy into the way that we are trying to progress.” Gareth Southgate - England Manager

Unlike repetitive drills or practices, the decisions that the players make are in the realism of the game. These decisions are not pre-determined by the practice or the coach, with many outcomes being uncertain, very much like the game we are preparing players to play.


Playing out scenarios and replicating the playing philosophy of your upcoming opponents creates a theatre of atmosphere for your players to feel as they experience playing under new challenges but shhh only tell one team. Can the team without the challenge adapt and overcome to #ChangeTheGame?

Framing team challenges as secret missions where the opposition needs to identify the problems in front of them whilst playing out their own challenges ask players to think like an opposition player, adjust to the information they identify and work collaboratively to execute the game plan. Supporting players to think of themselves as learners and thinkers, the skills we would want in every player.

Shaping how players think, adapt and interact with the game MatchPlay Cards are built on 4 principles to create environments that look and feel like the game; 1) Transfer responsibility 2) Ever-changing environment 3) Train above the game 4) Be reflective.

"The key always with practice is the transfer into the game… It is important to try to maximise the possibility of a transfer by not steering too far from the reality of the game." Steve Holland - England Football Assistant Coach


To problem solve on the run through the game extends players awareness of their own problem-solving abilities, facilitating player ownership and increased tools (skills!) to use for each situation given that the solution is not predetermined and publicly known, turning the coaches role from a problem solver to a problem setter, designers of learning.

Helping players to connect the behaviours and attributes with the position they're playing informs players’ decision-making and interactions with the game.

“I think it is a great challenge for coaches to think about what is needed and what buttons need to be pressed for each individual player to try and help them to improve.” Gareth Southgate - England Manager

Using individual in-game challenges to stretch and support players allows coaches to work with individuals in the team, connecting players with their individual development plans or setting challenges representative of their sporting heroes. What challenges will you be using?

Immersing coaches and players in the rollercoaster feelings of the game to support representative training design with team and player challenges MatchPlay Cards are here to help coaches coach through games, using great questions and develop skilful decision-makers.

Developed to support coaches coach through games in environments that look and feel like the game, MatchPlay Cards are used across the sporting landscape in 34 countries across the world helping coaches #ChangeTheGame.