EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS SOCCER COACHES

Combine and cross

Delivering accurate crosses from wide is a key part of any team’s armoury and the better your players become at it, the more effective your team will be at creating goalscoring opportunities.

What this session is about

  1. Crossing
  2. Combination play

What to think about

  • Observe where team mates are.
  • Aim between the six-yard box and penalty spot.
  • Keep cross away from keeper but give teammates something to attack.
  • Use different techniques for the various crossing positions. Around the box players can use a curled cross into (by first checking back) or away from the keeper; from the goal line they could use a grounded pull-back or chip to the far post.
  • Make runs to lose defenders and then head to near post, far post and centre of the goal.
  • Use combination play – one-twos, third man running – to release wide players into crossing positions.

Set-up

Warm upSessionDevelopmentsGame SituationWarm Down
10 minutes15 minutes15 minutes15 minutes15 minutes

What you get your players to do

Set up a triangle of cones: The first (1) just to the right of the D, the second (2) 10 yards to the right and the point of the triangle (3) 10 yards inside the area.

A fourth cone (4) is placed centrally two yards inside the penalty area and a line of players wait behind it.

Player 1 passes to 2 who passes to 3; 1 has run through and takes a pass from 3, takes a touch or two and crosses for 4 to attack. After each cross, players rotate to a different cone.

Variation 1: Repeat the drill on the other wing.

Variation 2: Move cone 4 so it’s nearer the goal or not central so crosser has to vary his delivery.

Players on cones 1, 2 and 3 exchange passes. 1 gets in a cross for 4 to score.

Players on cones 1, 2 and 3 exchange passes. 1 gets in a cross for 4 to score.


Development

Mark out a 40 x 25-yard pitch with a five-yard crossing channel down one side.

There are two manned goals. Place a crosser in each half of the channel.

Play 2v2 with a neutral player who plays for the attacking team.

A server on the halfway starts the game. The aim is to get the ball to the crosser who cannot leave the channel.

Once the attack is over, repeat going the other way so attackers become defenders.

To progress, put a time limit on the crosser say, three seconds.

Play 2v2 with a neutral player helping the attack. The ball must be got wide to the crossing channel.

Play 2v2 with a neutral player helping the attack. The ball must be got wide to the crossing channel.


Game situation

Play 4v4 on a 40 x 25-yard pitch with two manned keepers. Have an additional five-yard crossing on both sides.

Only one player from each team can enter the channel at any one time and no defender can enter until the attacker has taken his first touch. Goals scored from a cross are worth double.

Play 4v4 with a crossing channel on both sides. Goals scored from a cross are worth double.

Play 4v4 with a crossing channel on both sides. Goals scored from a cross are worth double.


What to call out

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