Return to play: Circle passing

There are a number of places where the social distancing rules are not the same as here in England, and I’ve been asked for sessions that are non contact but not just 5 players so this ssession can be used with any number of players. It is a simple warm-up that is suitable for players of any age range, it will soon have your team using effective first touch passing


Great for any age group once players have got into the swing of passing one way and running the other. You can use any number of players and add more as they turn up for training.

Set up

Create a circle with your players of around 10 yards in diameter. Place cones around the circle where each player should stand, or go inside the centre circle and get the players to take a few steps forwards to get the right size. We’ve used eight players.

How to play it

Place one of the players in the centre. Give the outside players numbers going around the circle like a clock. The middle player starts with the ball and passes to one of the circle, then immediately moves to switch play with the next number on the clock. The player coming on receives the ball and passes anti-clockwise around the clock and swaps with the next clockwise player. Eventually you want to get players getting the ball around the clock with one touch for each player and then you really do have a Brazilian warm-up on your hands.


Although simple in execution, this uses key elements of awareness, movement, passing, receiving and first touch control. Depending on the age and development of your players, the ideal is to get one touch passing and movement so the session is quick and continuous

    1. Start with the player in the middle who passes to one of the players around the circle
    2. Immediately the pass gets away, the centre player swaps position with the player clockwise from the player he passed to
    3. The player he swaps with must get quickly into the centre to receive the ball and pass it to the next player anti-clockwise around the circle

    4. Players continue to pass anti-clockwise and swap position with the player clockwise
    5. Try and get players to use one touch to get the ball around the clock
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