EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FOR GRASSROOTS SOCCER COACHES

My players cannot grasp the concept of ‘getting goal side’

Ask Dave

Dave says

This is a difficult concept for some of our younger players to understand, but it’s nothing you can’t master. My advice would be to break it down, as I always find it helps to try to sum up football terminology in one sentence.

So where ‘getting goal side’ is concerned, explain it in its simplest sense: just instruct the defender to get himself in between the attacker he is marking and the goal. Maybe tell your players to think of it like a burger – the goal and the attacker represent the burger bun, while you are the actual piece of meat in the middle… the important bit! Explain what getting goal side achieves – essentially, it’s the concept of blocking the attacker from getting to the goal.

And explain too the cost of not managing to get goal side – simply, the attacker has a clear path to goal and that ultimately means a clear goal scoring chance. This is what we want to prevent.

As always, practice makes perfect, but using fun terminology (such as the example of a burger) should make players view the concept in a light-hearted way.

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