Developing Play with a Defending Back Four

Developing Play with a Defending Back Four

The session is designed to show how to work on team shape building up from a back four only. Side cones are 25 to 30 yards apart as are the defenders and the coach. The coach moves with the ball and the defenders mirror the movement maintaining the distances between them.

Read More

Academy Level: A Fun Awareness Warm-up for Improving Peripheral Vision

Academy Level: A Fun Awareness Warm-up for Improving Peripheral Vision

Use this warm up to work on awareness of where other players are (in this case all the other players are defenders trying to win possession of your ball) whilst maintaining possession of the ball ensuring players are looking around away from their own ball.

Read More

Warm Up and Cool Down for Training and Match Situations

Warm Up and Cool Down for Training and Match Situations

Warm Up and Cool Down are both important parts of any coaching session or indeed any game situation and should be included at all times particularly at a young age where doing so reinforces good habits in players. Due to the great need for players to have as much contact on the ball as possible to aid technical development, I recommend coaches get away from warming up and cooling down without the ball and introduce its use at every session they do, be it at a game or at practice.

Read More

1 v 1 Defending and When and Where to Drop Off Against Pace

1 v 1 Defending and When and Where to Drop Off Against Pace

This is a breakaway 1 v 1 situation with the striker running at the defender in a straight line towards goal and kicking the ball past them and chasing it down. The defender must be “side on” already with their body turned back and ready to run towards their own goal. Defender must increase their speed dropping back; running almost side on and backwards (but head facing forwards watching the striker and the ball until it is played pass them, then they have a full turn and chase) as the striker kicks the ball past them and must start their dropping run early enough to give themselves time and space on the striker. 

Read More

The Roles and Responsibilities of Each Player in 9 v 9

The Roles and Responsibilities of Each Player in 9 v 9

Here we are looking at players 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 8, 9; 10 and 11 of the 11 v 11 and we will look at them in this particular formation of 1-3-3-1-1.  You could of course use different formations at 9 v 9 but I'm basing it on this one because it’s closer to the set up of the 11 v 11 so it transitions easily into it.

Read More