Soccer drill for turning and dribbling with the ball

When young players first start running with the ball, they like to run in the direction they are facing. It’s difficult for them to keep control of the ball and turn their bodies at the same time. Use these basic football ball control drills to coach them to change direction as they run with the ball.

This is a great exercise to develop basic dribbling skills and get young football (soccer) players used to having to change direction  during a match, using both the inside and outside of their feet to manipulate the ball.

Basic football drill to get players changing direction while running with the ball

Set up

  • In a 10 yard square, four players, with a ball each, stand at each corner – A, B, C and D.
  • You need to place a cone a couple of feet inside the square from each corner and one in the centre.

Run the drill

  • Starting with player A, each player, in turn, dribbles the ball around the cone in front of them, then moves quickly to the centre cone.
  • Players go around the centre cone before dribbling back to their place, keeping the ball under control.
  • Once the player has reached the start of their turn around the centre cone, the next player (in a clockwise rotation) begins a similar route from their own corner.
  • The players move in sequence.

Advance the turning drill skills

You can advance this football turning, dribbling drill to make it harder by getting the players to return to the corner to the left of them.

So, when player A reaches the centre cone, player B sets off and player A will return to player B’s corner. Player B will then return to player C’s, and so on.

Key soccer (football) coaching tips

  • Tell players to use the inside and outside of their feet to control and dribble the ball.
  • Control is more important than speed.
  • Once players show control and good technique, then speed them up.

Click here for a football (soccer) drill to get players dribbling and passing the ball using either foot.

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