Pass with purpose

It is important for young players to recognise when the ball is passed to them by looking up at all times giving them more chance to control the ball. It matches it is often speed of movement and control which gives a player the edge when they are receiving the ball under pressure.

Set up

You need ball and cones. Set up an area 20 x 20 yards with a smaller 6 yard square in the centre marked by four cones. For my session I have used 8 players.

How to play it

Diagram 1 The players outside the square pass to their partners next to the cones who move forward to control and return the pass. The players then move on one cone. After 10 passes get the outside and inside players to swap roles.
Diagram 2 advances the session by removing the cones. The players in the centre have a ball each. Players in the square must jog around then sprint, pass to an outside player, control the return and sprint away. Play for 90 seconds then swap roles
In diagram 3 tighten the square to 10 yards. Use four players outside the square but only two inside. The players inside can pass to any of the four outside but passes must be fast and sharp. Players inside the square must control quickly and pass to the outside players who return the pass first time.


This session is all about technique and advancing play so that players can recognize when to pass and receive as well as do it.

    1. Each pair has a ball and the outside players pass to the player in the centre who comes to the ball, receives and passes back.
    2. The centre players move quickly to the next cone when they have passed the ball back

    3. Here the cones are removed and player play a one –two with an outside player when it is clear to do so.
    4. Each player has a ball and must look to see when an outside player is ‘open’ for a pass

    5. Now the area is made smaller and the centre players must go in pairs to pass and move between the four outside players.
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