Developing the Striker and Shadow Striker Using 6 Players

The following is part of a presentation on Developing the Striker and Shadow Striker Using 6 Players that can be found in the Striker Movement Section of the Soccer Awareness Training Center. Soccer Awareness Training Center provides unlimited access to Wayne Harrison's Soccer Awareness systems, training sessions, drills and more. Wayne's system helps develop world class youth soccer players and teams in a systematic and imaginative manner that guarantees performance at the highest level of competition. Whether you’re a beginning coach who needs help getting started or someone who wants to add some variety to their training sessions, the Soccer Awareness Training Center offers a wide variety of drills to choose from. Join Today


This exercise is great for the thinking processes and fast decision making on and off the ball and rotations between players. Can call this the striker (9) and Shadow Striker (10) also working off each other. But it can apply to players in other parts of the field supporting each other. THE PLAYERS IN THE MIDDLE MUST ALWAYS SCAN BEHIND THEM WITH A LOOK OVER THE SHOULDER BEFORE RECEIVING THE BALL. 

Technical Coaching points:  

  1. Support angle / distance of the two middle players (not in straight lines)  
  2. Receiving skills of the two middle players (TIGHT first touch is vital)
  3. Passes into and from the two middle players (weight, timing and accuracy)
  4. Awareness of the two middle players (scanning openings)  
  5. Combination plays of the two middle players (give and go’s a favorite)
  6. The TIMING of movements and PASSES are vital and must be in synch

Progression: Servers can change sides before receiving a pass from the middle players. 

Liken the thirds to the attacking third, middle third and defensive third so the shadow striker is dropping back from the attacking third to the middle third to receive the ball. You could liken this to a midfield player dropping short to receive from the back players also.

This is a great all round clinic for many skills being trained including: Passing and the weight and angle of the pass, Movement off the ball, Creating and finding space, supporting positions particularly angled support; decision making without pressure to begin, transition, and ultimately Awareness on and off the ball. Both middle players must touch the ball before it is transferred to the other side.

The two middle players must be aware of each others positions. Must never be in the same half of the field to ensure one goes short and one long.  Working on receiving skills and release skills. 

Avoid supporting in a straight line, working angles off each other to support.

Play the ball into striker (9) who then lays it off for the shadow striker (10), instead of it going to the shadow striker first then the point striker. The difference is, to the shadow striker first, this player has to receive and turn and pass, into the point striker then it is all passing the way you are facing. 10 x 10 yard grid or larger if necessary.

Supporting at angles to each other for greater Peripheral Vision

The Basic set up. (1) passes to (2) who passes (3) who passes back to (4) who passes to (5) who passes to (6). (3) and (4) MUST be at angles to each other. All passes are angled. We have 4 zones that players use to find their positions in. 10 x 10 yard grid.

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Showing the passing sequence and the movements of (3) and (4). Once the ball gets to (6) (1) and (2) have switched with (3) and (4) and gotten in position to receive and work off each other. 10 x 10 yard grid.
 

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As the ball travels the players are switching. The pass from (5) to (6) takes time and allows time for the switch. 10 x 10 yard grid.
 

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As the ball travels the players are switching. The pass from (5) to (6) takes time and allows time for the switch. Now (1) is in position to receive from (6) and (2) is in position to receive from (1). 10 x 10 yard grid.
 

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As the ball travels the players are switching. The pass from (5) to (6) takes time and allows time for the switch. Now (1) is in position to receive from (6) and (2) is in position to receive from (1). 10 x 10 yard grid.
 

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Striker Movements Section Preview

Soccer Awareness Training Center provides unlimited access to Wayne Harrison's Soccer Awareness systems, training sessions, drills and more. Wayne's system helps develop world class youth soccer players and teams in a systematic and imaginative manner that guarantees performance at the highest level of competition. Join Now