INSPIRATION | CONFIDENCE | SUCCESS

Supporting forward passes

It is vital that players support forward passes so that attackers are not isolated and possession can be retained.

What this session is about

Encouraging midfield players to get forward and support the attackers.

What to think about

When playing mini soccer (7v7) most teams will play with one forward. This is the same for lots of adult professional teams where 4-5-1 and 4-3-3 are the favoured formations in the premier league.

In both these groups the forwards are often isolated from the rest of the team. Therefore, players such as Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard and Cesc Fabregas who regularly make supporting runs to help their forward are becoming the most important players in football.

Set-up

  •  50 x 40 yard area.
Warm upSessionDevelopmentsGame SituationWarm Down
10 minutes10 minutes10 minutes15 minutes15 minutes

What you get your players to do

The session is set up with 6 stations, 3 for the defending team (two centre backs and a recovering midfielder, white kits) and 3 for the attacking team (one forward and two central midfielders, grey kits) as shown in the first diagram.

To start, the recovery midfielder plays a pass into the opposing team’s forward and the game commences with the two attacking midfielders making runs to support the forward and the recovery defender trying to get back into position to help defend.

Can the attackers score or can the defenders stop them?

Rotate the players so they experience starting at each of the stations.

Attacking midfielders must get forward to support the attacker.

Attacking midfielders must get forward to support the attacker.


Development

The practice is developed by giving the attacking team a goal and goalkeeper themselves. This goalkeeper now starts the practice and rolls the ball into the forward.

The attacking team must now make good decisions on their supporting runs just as in a game. If both midfielders run beyond the ball and possession is lost the team is in danger of conceding.

The attacking team are given left and right wingers who play on the outside of the pitch.

The attacking team can play outside to the wingers who can dribble down the line unopposed to create crossing opportunities for the team.

By adding a goal the attacking team risk conceding if they lose the ball.

By adding a goal the attacking team risk conceding if they lose the ball.


Game situation

Play a small-sided game where goals are worth double if they are scored by a midfielder supporting a forward pass.

Add wingers for the attacking team to encourage width.

Add wingers for the attacking team to encourage width.


What to call out

  • “Play at match tempo”
  • “Support quickly”
  • “Be direct”
  • “Can you get your shots off?”
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