Have it, lose it, win it back

Who doesn’t love to dominate the opposition with a lot of possession by intelligent short passes which in the end opens up the entire opponents defensive line?

It is a fantastic tactic to use but remember you also need a plan to win the ball back when your team inevitably loses it!

Possession football normally uses elaborate build-up where the team looks to pass their way forward looking to tire the opposition out as they have to chase the ball around. Tempo doesn’t need to be quick, but passes must be accurate and within the overall plan. Players will take less risks, but can choose to play through balls to the lone striker/false nine or inside forwards. Players will constantly make themselves available giving them the ability to decide if it’s the right time to enter the final third or retain possession for a longer time to unbalance the opposition team further.

Players will be closely linked together making the team able to overload specific areas (where the ball is). These 2v1 or 3v 1 situations will not only make them dominate the match, but can also be used to regain possession quickly. Because afterall, your team will at stages in the match not have the ball and need to win it back.

Advantages of a possession game

By keeping possession, you will eventually make the opponents more undisciplined and impatient. The other team can’t score if you keep possession of the ball, so in order for them to regain possession, they will be forced to chase you all over the pitch.

Disadvantages of a possession game

By playing patient build-up it may make your attacking predictable. The other team can defend by staying deep packing the penalty box reducing available space to exploit to a minimum, forcing you to shoot from long or use other tools which may increase the risk of losing possession. If teams Park The Bus they will not be easy to break down and play becomes boring and the team open to a quick smash and grab counter attack.

Here are three of the best sessions to help you:

Possession or score encourages strikers to have rapid shots at goal and to link up in the middle of the park with one-twos and one-touch passing. Defenders can switch play when in possession and spread out to keep the ball from attackers.

One of the key moments in a possession game is being able to use the ball and create goal scoring chances. It is easy to just keep the ball and neglect the principles of attack. In Possession in overloads players get lots of chances to create, and score, goals

In 3v2 transitions the attacking team has an overload but can the defending team use their players to create their own overload and win the ball back so they can score? It is one of my favourite sessions to get a reaction from my players.

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