INSPIRATION | CONFIDENCE | SUCCESS

Goalkeeper W-catch

Catching the ball is a fundamental goalkeeping technique, and the best way to receive balls arriving at chest height or above is to set the hands in either a “W” or diamond shape.

What this session is about

  1. Catching technique.
  2. Handling high balls.

What to think about

  • Get in line – light on toes, move feet, body behind ball.
  • Form either a “W” or diamond shape behind ballwith thumbs and forefingers.
  • Spread fingers.
  • Watch ball into hands.
  • Lean slightly forward, catch ball in front of body.
  • If jumping – jump off one leg, catch ball at highest point.

Set-up

1 ball per player.

Warm upSessionDevelopmentsGame SituationWarm Down
15 minutes10 minutes10 minutes10 minutes15 minutes

What you get your players to do

Each player bounces the ball repeatedly from around chest high into the ground and catches it on the way back up.

Keeping feet planted, players now twist their torsos to the left and bounce the ball, twist back to the centre for a second bounce, then twist to the right for a third bounce. Players continue rotating back and forth.

Increase number of bounces in each position then the speed.

Make sure the hands form a “W” when catching.

Make sure the hands form a “W” when catching.


Development

In pairs, players stand opposite each other about 3-5 metres apart and gently throw the ball to each other. Service should be varied, including using one hand or two, underarm, overarm and throw-in techniques, while the ball should be directed straight at the goalkeeper as well as slightly to the left and right of them.

Balls should also be thrown at anywhere between chest height and above head-height so goalkeepers have to jump.

Practice catching at various heights and speeds in pairs.

Practice catching at various heights and speeds in pairs.


Game situation

Play 1v1 in a 10x15m grid with goals at opposite ends, although distance is dependent on the age and ability of players. Players take it in turn to attempt to score by using any goalkeeper kicking or throwing technique. If a goalkeeper saves the ball, they take their turn to score from the spot they collected it.

Narrow the width of the goals using poles if each goalkeeper is spending more time practising deflecting rather than catching skills.

Goalkeepers score points by catching the ball in this game.

Goalkeepers score points by catching the ball in this game.


What to call out

  • “Check your fingers are making a “W” or diamond shape after each catch.”
  • “Make sure you serve the ball accurately.”
  • “Use arms to absorb the pace of the ball.”
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