Soccer coaching game for defending and attacking in pairs in a 4v4

This game works on pairs defending and attacking in a quick 4v4 game.

How to set it up

  • Mark out an area measuring 30 yards square.
  • Split your squad into three groups and line them up.
  • Place a goal and a goalkeeper at one end.


The rules

  • The two outside players work together and attack against a player from the central group, 2v1, to finish with a shot at goal.
  • Whether the move ends in a goal, a clearance or an interception, the lone player (defender) returns to his group.
  • The attackers now turn and defend 2v1 against a lone attacker who steps forward from the middle group.
  • The practice runs continuously for a set period of time to be dictated by the coach.
  • Each group takes a turn as the central group.

Why this game works

The pressure is on the central group in this overload transition game. In one instance the lone player has to defend while at a numerical disadvantage then the next player in his group has to attack.

You are looking for middle group players to impress against considerable obstacles and at the same time watching for the duo to perform their duties in an efficient, controlled way.

They have an obvious advantage in both attacking and defending, but their task may not be as simple as they think.

This formation advice is taken from Soccer Attack! by Michael Beale. Soccer Attack! contains 80 drills and games to develop shooting and finishing.

For more soccer coaching tips and products visit Soccer Coaching Club.

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