EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FOR GRASSROOTS SOCCER COACHES

5 ways to have fun at training

Kids like nothing more than to have fun – and fun games are great for encouraging youth teams to play with flair and imagination. From the very basics to skills like stepovers and feints, these games get young players to show what they can do – and because players are under no pressure to perform, fun games will encourage them to beat their opponents and attempt outrageous passes.

Neymar Brazil

Neymar makes training fun

For the younger age groups, start off with games that fire their imagination like Space Invaders, which gets young players excited and burns energy. It’s also a great way to coach dribbling, control of the ball and passing.

You can also use fun games to start off training sessions or to get players up to speed before they play a match – Tiger Tails is easy to set up and gets young players running around, changing direction and looking to see where the other players are.

Even if you coach older players, fun games are great for getting across a coaching point. Shrinking goal is a fantastic way to even up sides with a goal that shrinks or gets bigger depending on how accurate the players are with their shooting.

You can even have fun with your goalkeeper in this Sweeper keeper game, which is a fantastic way to coach playing out from the back and retaining possession using the keeper – a tactic used by most professional teams.

Finally, with the World Cup in full flow, you can get your players to pretend they are playing in a match and get them to try out this free kick that was played to perfection by England’s Paul Gascoigne and David Platt in the Italia 90 World Cup.

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