Stop match day mayhem

It was the first matches of the season in youth leagues up and down the country in the UK this week and it has been interesting to see the different reactions from the coaches I know.

Most have been excited but some have been back to the “same old thing” with players turning up late and not being ready to play a match.

I’m blessed with parents who always get their children to games with plenty of time for getting them together and gives me a chance to get the players warmed up and ready to play the game.

I like to use rondos with my players because it is focused and fun for them. A lot of teams we play practice corners with an almost chaotic group of players trying to score in the goals.

It is a vital part of match day preparation and will help you to stop the “same old thing” and get your players in top gear at the very start of the match.

Try using the rondos below to help your team prepare for matches.

Start by reading my 8 tips for Rondo success which explains about using Rondos and what your players can get out of them. It’s a great way to encourage players to recreate match-like situations and solve them themselves.

Key Rondo passes is a great way of making Rondos into a game with points for different passes and passes that split the defending pair. It will really get your players working hard to score points.

Now you need to play a Rondo. One of my favourites is Final pass Rondo which works on passing vision and is linked to creative play in and around the final third of the pitch. Easy to set up, it is great fun for your players as well as being a technical challenge.

I also like to use Full squad Rondo because it is different to the kind you would use for warming up. This Rondo gets players into scoring positions and gives a good work out in shooting and scoring goals. It’s a game for older age groups as it involves 18 players but it is a fantastic work-out during training.

For good fun Rondos, I turn the basic Rondo into a game where players are moving their Rondo from square to square trying to beat their opponents who are also moving in a Rondo. Moving the ball around the circle and also moving the circle around the area takes great concentration and technique but the added competition makes Rondo decisions a great game to play.

You can also use the basic Rondo to help you on match days. Simple Rondo is easy to set up and a great way to keep your players entertained while you sort out the details of the match.

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