Simply put, soccer is a game of fitness, so it is important to be in the best shape possible. Being fit for soccer will allow you to do 3 things that will benefit both you and your team.
1. Being Fit Lets you Play the Whole Game with Limited Substitutions
Soccer games played at the highest level only allow for 3 total substitutions for your team; other levels will impose different limits. This means that if you are a starter, you need to be fit enough to play the whole game. You also want to be fitter than your opponent to constantly beat him/her to balls and be able to make run after run as the game winds on and players start to get fatigued.
But this point isn’t just for the starting eleven. If you are not a starter, you still need to be fit enough to come off the bench and bring energy, enthusiasm, and help change the dynamic of the game. This could mean either closing a game out or creating a spark to help change momentum.
2. Being Fit Helps with Touch
Being fit allows you to get your body into the correct position to receive the ball across your body. If you are not fit, then you will not have enough energy to get into the right position, which will cause your first touch to be poor. Essentially, if you are playing tired you will start reaching for the ball, so when you are receiving it, your foot is planted on the ground. This will prevent you from successfully cushioning the ball and will cause it to bounce up or away from you.
3. Being Fit Leads to Better Communication
Communication is soccer is huge. When you are tired, you tend not to talk at all.
The reason is because you are trying to conserve your energy to use it for running, passing, shooting, and tackling. When you are truly fit to play soccer, you will be able to constantly talk and give your teammates information throughout the whole game. It helps to break down teams, be organized defensively, helps your teammates know if he or she can ‘turn’ or if there is a ‘man on.’