Real Madrid

Hitting the ball on the run was one of David Beckham’s biggest assets at Real Madrid. Use this activity to improve the crossing of your players

Why use it

At Real Madrid Beckham’s ability to cross the ball on the run made life difficult for the opposition defenders. This is one of the harder skills that wingers need and it helps them to catch out defenders on the counterattack without stopping or slowing the attack down.

Set up

Set up a 45×35-yard area with a 15×15-yard box in the centre of the pitch and a five-yard channel along each side. We’ve used 10 players in this session. You need bibs, balls, cones and two normal goals.

How to play

Play a simple 5v5 including goalkeepers. In this gamethe ball cannot be passed or dribbled through the centre box, so play must go wide to get past it. Players can run into the channels on the wings to receive the ball and can only take three touches before the opposition can follow them into the channel. Any goals scored from a running cross out of the wing channels count double.

Technique

Players need to look up while they are dribbling the ball and execute a good cross on the move. This is difficult for young players to co-ordinate, so give them plenty of opportunity to practise and don’t punish any mistakes.