Set pieces

Set pieces are an important part of a successful team and when you are developing your players they need the ability to take a set piece in their locker.

Most young players can’t crash and smash the ball like their heroes can. They don’t have the power to kick the ball so hard that it bends in two or three different directions over 25 or 30 yards. They need something a bit more creative.

This is why I inspire my players to experiment with different ways of taking set pieces, so that they don’t have to rely on power or bending the ball into the corner. I get them to use their skills, movement and a bit of deceit to help them get a shot on target from a dead ball situation.

Whether it’s free-kicks, throw-ins, goalkicks, kick offs or corners you’ll find something here to inspire your team.

Individual skill: deadly dead balls

in Email newsletters, Set pieces

Perfect set pieces can be a thing of beauty... but they can also spell disaster. Think of how many times you see a free kick sail over the bar or a corner put your team from attacking to defending a counter attack. Dead ball situations are an individual skill from the player taking the set piece but also they encompass a whole team working to take advantage of the situation. MORE

Score from set pieces

in Email newsletters, Set pieces

There are a lot of set pieces in a match no matter what level or age you are playing at. So you should make sure you practice at training and get your players to set up and take the important set pieces that could be the difference between success and failure. MORE

Short Corner feature

Don’t shout instructions

in Blog, Set pieces

shouting from the touchline is one of the downsides of being a coach in the grassroots game. I like to think I have educated the parents of my players so that they only shout encouraging things and respect the opposition players and parents. But sometimes they too shout things that are not helpful to the team on match days MORE

Throw for broke

in Set pieces, Small Sided Games

A long throw when teams are in the attacking third of the pitch can be as effective as a corner kick or a free-kick. Use this session to identify a couple of players who can perfect the technique. Set up You need balls, bibs, cones and two goals. Set up an area 30 x 20... MORE

Defend an outswinging corner

in Defending, Set pieces

Here’s a set-up I have used for defending a right-footed outswinging corner, with each player being afforded a defined role. If defenders are successful in repelling the threat, they can look to break forward and score in either of the two goals positioned on the halfway line. MORE

Brazil nuts

in Attacking, Set pieces

This was inspired by the Brazil national team. It needs space for the move to work, so think about it when your players are awarded a free-kick some 25-30 yards from goal MORE

zonal defending

Defend together

in Defending, Set pieces

Once your players understand the concept of zonal defending, this game allows you to put the system into context playing a game with lots of corners MORE

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