INSPIRED, CONFIDENT & EFFECTIVE COACHING

The Gauntlet

These fun, competitive drills will help players develop their close control and dribbling, before “running The Gauntlet” at the end.

What this session is about

  1. Dribbling.
  2. Improving close control.

What to think about

Players need to:

  • Keep the ball within playing distance.
  • Use the inside and outside of both feet.
  • Take quick, small steps.
  • Be aware of what’s happening by keeping the head up.
  • Learn technique first, speed later.

Set-up

Split the group into three equal teams.

Warm upSessionDevelopmentsGame SituationWarm Down
7-10 minutes20-25 minutes15-20 minutes15-20 minutes7-10 minutes

What you get your players to do

Use three lines of six cones, with about 1m between each one depending on the age/ability of the players. Each team lines up behind the first cone.

Players take it in turns to “slalom” the ball through the cones without touching them. Once they reach the end, they sprint back and give the ball to the next team mate. The first team with all four players back is the winner.

Players dribble through a set of cones using different parts of their feet.

Players dribble through a set of cones using different parts of their feet.


Development

Use a playing area 20 yards square. Lay out five pairs of 1m gates using disc cones across the playing area.

Each team starts from a different corner. The first player from each team must dribble through each pair of gates, in no set order and in any direction, before passing to the next team mate in line.

The first team with all four players back is the winner.

Each team starts from a different corner and must dribble a ball through each gate before passing to their next team mate.

Each team starts from a different corner and must dribble a ball through each gate before passing to their next team mate.


Game situation

Use a 30 yards by 20 yards area for a game of The Gauntlet. One player (gladiator) from one team stands in the centre while all players from the other teams stand at one end, each with a ball.

Each player with a ball “runs” The Gauntlet (with their ball) from one end to the other, while the gladiator tries to kick as many balls as possible out of the area.

Any player that loses a ball is out of the game. After one run, a point is gained for each successful player. Another gladiator joins his team mate in the centre for the second run.

The game continues with an extra gladiator joining in after each pass until all the players are out. Swap teams so each has a turn at being the gladiators. The team with the most points wins.

Gladiators try to kick as many balls as possible out of play before their opponents reach the opposite end.

Gladiators try to kick as many balls as possible out of play before their opponents reach the opposite end.


What to call out

  • “Keep the ball close”
  • “Be light on your feet”
  • “Head up”
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