INSPIRATION | CONFIDENCE | SUCCESS

Reaction saves

Increasing a goalkeeper’s reaction time by even a fraction of a second will improve their chances of making vital saves.

This session encourages your goalkeeper to be more mobile, turn sharply and return to their feet quickly to block a rebound. How will they react?

What this session is about

  1. Sharpening reactions.
  2. Improving diving technique.

What to think about

  • Goalkeepers must be in the “ready” position.
  • Dive diagonally forward into the line of ball – The body should hit the floor in the following order: ankle, outside of knee, hip, side of upper torso and shoulder.
  • Does your goalkeeper gather the ball using both hands?
  • Do they return to their feet immediately, prepared to make the next save?

Set-up

Position two balls three yards apart.

Warm upSessionDevelopmentsGame SituationWarm Down
10 minutes15 minutes15 minutes10-15 minutes5-10 minutes

What you get your players to do

On your command, the goalkeeper reacts as quickly as possible by diving either to the left or right, and grasps the ball.
They then quickly return to their starting position for your next instruction.

The goalkeeper must react quickly to dive and grab the ball called.

The goalkeeper must react quickly to dive and grab the ball called.


Development

  • Using cones, make the goal wider.
  • The goalkeeper faces away from a server positioned five yards away.
  • On your call the goalkeeper must turn and react to save a ball rolled to either side.
  • Develop further by varying the height and speed of service.
On your shout, the goalkeeper turns and has to move quickly to react to the moving ball.

On your shout, the goalkeeper turns and has to move quickly to react to the moving ball.


Game situation

  • Play 4v4 plus two goalkeepers, with no offsides, on a 30 yards by 20 yards playing area. Place the goals on the longer touch lines, making the pitch wide.
  • Both sides take a maximum of three touches before shooting, see the bottom picture.
  • If the goalkeeper makes a save and the ball leaves the pitch, you immediately serve another ball to an attacking player so they can shoot straight at goal rather than take a corner.
In a game, if the goalkeeper makes a save, immediately serve another ball for the attacking team to shoot.

In a game, if the goalkeeper makes a save, immediately serve another ball for the attacking team to shoot.


What to call out

  • “On your toes”
  • “Move your feet – don’t just dive – get as close to the shot as possible”
  • “Attack the ball”
  • “Up! Up!”
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