The long ball over the top of the defence can be difficult to defend against in youth soccer, so I’ve put together five drills and activities to help you coach defending against teams that play long ball tactics… One of the best ways to stop long balls is to get strikers to press high up... MORE
Speed of play and penetration
This session encourages players to get behind the defence using a progressive practice that builds up to 7v7
Why use it
Important for teams to keep possession and as individuals get behind opponents and win 1v1s.
You need balls, bibs, cones and two goals with pitch sizes marked on the diagrams. We used 6 players in the session
Good movement and passing with a smart final pass. First touch should be good.
How to do it
DIAGRAM 1 Start as 3v2+GK (progress to 4v3+GK). One CB and one forward in each final third remain in play at all times. Attack goes in one direction. After a goal/shot at keeper/turnover one player from each team leaves the field. The GK now distributes to one of the two wide options and a 3v2 ensues the other way.
- 1. In the first session players should try to commit the defender with good combination play in the midfield looking to penetrate
- 2. Important that play is direct and positive with quick reactions in transition
DIAGRAM 2 Play 7v7 in a field with 3 zones. One CB and one forward in each final third with a 4v4 in the middle zone. The objective of the 4 in possession is to play into the target player. When the target player is played to a team mate may support in the final third.
- 1. In the 7v7 players must look for opportunities to get behind opponents making good use of space and support play
- 2. Look to play diagonal passes into straight runs and straight passes into diagonal runs
DIAGRAM 3 Set up a 7v7 in a field with 3 zones. Play 6v 6 in the middle zone. The objective of the team in possession is to play into a designated forward player. When the target player is found the team may then release on the pass or dribble one player into the final third.
- 1. Now good passing into the final third needs good timing from the passer and the receiver who must remain onside and try to get a strike on goal