The following game is an excerpt from Soccer Awareness eBook 4: Attacking and Defending Games: Challenging the Mindset and Mental Transition of the Players.
This is another multi goal game to consider. Promote quick play with fast penetrating forward runs beyond the ball (3rd man runs).
Set-up: Grid size - 30 yards long x full width of the field. Six mini goals are created using cones and flags. Divide the players up into two equal teams. Have an additional team ready to come on after 4 minutes has elapsed to replace the losing team. Each goal should be 5 to 7 yards apart. A supply of balls is placed in the back of each gridded end zone. Depending on what system of play you are currently employing would determine how many midfielders you would start with. The end zone behind each goal should be 5 to 7 yards deep.
Objective: This exercise teaches players to time their runs as well as the importance of possession in the middle 1/3rd and final 1/3rd of the field. Both teams compete for the ball and try to score off the dribble or pass for the first 5 minutes. In the above diagram, player (1) passes to player (2) who finds player (3) making a perfectly timed run in behind the defense. The goals act as a natural offside line. Players may not be waiting behind the goals or it becomes the opponent’s ball. The defending team may not chase the attacking players into the end zone. Players need to work for each other creating space. Emphasis may be shifted toward the defending side of the ball verses the attacking side. In that case the emphasis is put on communication, pressure on the ball, immediate support cutting out all paths leading to the goal.
- Put in the restriction you may only score off of a pass that has penetrated the goal and has been collected on the other side of the goal.
- RULE: WHEN A PLAYER PASSES THE BALL BACK ANOTHER PLAYER MUST IMMEDIATELY RUN FORWARD.
- As play becomes easy add restrictions, before you can go to goal it must come off of a 1 TOUCH pass, a 3rd man combination, a double pass, an overlap, a spin move or a give and go.
- The final phase would be to allow the team who has successfully scored to turn and now attack the opposite 3 goals.
- QUICK PLAY WITH FAST PENETRATING FORWARD RUNS BEYOND THE BALL.
- Having good field awareness and vision around you is all important but one must be able to connect their pass to be successful in this exercise.
- Mobility on both sides of the ball.
- Possession - Don’t give it away or you will have to defend 3 goals.
- Communication both sides of the ball.
- Be precise with your passes.
- Support on both sides of the ball.