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Stop your opponents in midfield

It can be very frustrating when your midfield gets overrun by the opposition – winning the ball in these areas is key to making sure your team is not under siege from a strong opponent.

Midfield is the area where your opponents build up play into attack so you need to make sure your team is disrupting and pressing opponents in this area. If you practice individual and team play to create fast pressing and interceptions your players will be able to win the ball and launch their own attacks.

It is identified as a role that protects the defence which is very important in youth soccer when defenders are often pulled out of position leaving holes at the back. Winning the ball in the midfield stops the opposition attack exploiting those holes.

Top Tips For Midfield Interceptors

> Try and mark opponents ball side and goal side
> Be close enough to press opponents when they are receiving
> Recognise when to mark the player and when to cover space
> Be positioned to intercept
> Know when (and when not) to try and intercept
> Play quickly when regaining possession
> On winning the ball, try to counterattack with a pass or a run

Use these sessions to help you coach a midfield interceptor:

Steal the ball is all about positioning in this lively intercepting game aimed at teaching your players how to nick the ball back from the other team while it’s still in midfield.

If you want your players to understand the role of a midfield power house, try The enforcer. It’s a challenging game to teach them how to win back possession.

Check out my latest podcast: A consequence of development is winning, where I talk to Duncan Ryan of Football Coaches Australia about coaching and getting the best out of your players.

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