INSPIRATION | CONFIDENCE | SUCCESS

Dribble or pass?

This finishing practice works on decision making. Should you pass or should you dribble?

What this session is about

The difference between good, very good and excellent players often lies in decision making. Players can have all the technique and ability but not know when and where to utilise these skills. This session starts to develop this decision making process.

What to think about

In soccer you can do three things with the ball: pass, dribble or shoot. You will only shoot when you are near the goal, you will only dribble when in space or in a 1v1 situation to take on a defender. The rest of the time you will pass the ball. The speed and accuracy of your pass, combined with movements off the ball will often determine how many times you get to dribble or shoot.

Set-up

  •  40x30yd area.
Warm upSessionDevelopmentsGame SituationWarm Down
10-15 minutes10 minutes15-20 minutes10 minutes10 minutes

What you get your players to do

Practice 1 – One player must go out and become the first target player. Then next player has a choice of trying to take the target player on to score, or to use the target player for a one-two and then shoot at goal.

The player chooses to play a one-two before shooting at goal.

The player chooses to play a one-two before shooting at goal.


Development

Player 1 can either dribble and shoot or play a one-two with one of the outside players. After this ball is played the two outside players play 2v1 against player 1. Do the outside players combine to pass past the defender or does one dribble alone? Can they use overlaps to create the space to score?

To further develop the session, after the 2v1, two additional players enter the game to make a 3v2. The coach can pass the new ball to any of the three white attackers. Again, what do they decide to do? Combine or dribble alone?

After player 1 has taken their shot they defend 1v2. The attackers must decide how to get to goal.

After player 1 has taken their shot they defend 1v2. The attackers must decide how to get to goal.


Game situation

Play a normal game and look for players making the right decision on whether to dribble or pass when they are faced with an opponent.

Finally, the session moves to 3v2. How do the extra numbers alter the attacker’s decision whether to dribble or pass?

Finally, the session moves to 3v2. How do the extra numbers alter the attacker’s decision whether to dribble or pass?


What to call out

  • “Make a quick decision”
  •  “Play at top speed”
  •  “Commit the defender”
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