EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FROM QUALIFIED AND EXPERIENCED GRASSROOTS SOCCER COACHES

Picture perfect

Players such as Xavi or Frank Lampard seem to have more time and space than their opponents because of their awareness of what’s happening around them. This session improves your players’ midfield ability by creating a “picture” in their minds before receiving the ball.

What this session is about

  1.  Having a game “picture” on receiving the ball.
  2.  Retaining possession.
  3.  Combining with team mates.

What to think about

  •  On receiving a pass, does your player know what they will do next?
  •  Before receiving, are they able to “scan” the pitch to see what options are open to them?
  •  Developing the skill to “get a picture” of what is around them is essential for midfield players.
  •  Players who are capable of developing this will have more time and space than others.
  •  This will improve your team’s ability to keep possession.

Set-up

Two 15 yards by 15 yards playing areas. Progressing to one 30 yards by 30 yards area for the game situation.

Warm upSessionDevelopmentsGame SituationWarm Down
10 minutes10-15 minutes10-15 minutes10-15 minutes10 minutes

What you get your players to do

Split your players into groups of six. Two go inside the playing area and four stand on the outside, moving up and down the line. Two of the outside players have a ball. The inside players receive a pass and, with a maximum of two touches, pass to a different outside player. They then move to receive the ball that the other inside player was using in order to continue. After one minute, rotate the players. You can reduce to one touch in order to increase difficulty.

Players receive a pass in order to control and play out to a new server.

Players receive a pass in order to control and play out to a new server.


Development

Progress so the two inside players are working together. The players receive one ball, play out and then go to receive the second ball. The players are only allowed one touch each. Therefore, they have to “scan for a picture”, make angles for each other and communicate in order to be successful.

They then move to receive a pass from the server they didn’t play to and repeat.

They then move to receive a pass from the server they didn’t play to and repeat.


Game situation

Create a 30 yards by 30 yards area. Two teams of six nominate two players to start inside the area whilst the other players stand around the outside. The aim is for players to combine in order to retain possession. The inside players can use the outside players to help them. You can develop this by playing 3v3 or 4v4 inside the pitch and reducing the number of outside target players.

Players combine with one touch each to pass to a server and then make new angles to receive the next pass.

Players combine with one touch each to pass to a server and then make new angles to receive the next pass.


What to call out

  •  “Scan the pitch”
  •  “Get yourself a picture”
  •  “Make a good pass”
  •  “Keep possession of the ball”
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