Keeper gets cross

Having a trustworthy, proficient keeper positively influences the mindsets and playing abilities of all players in front of him. This is a session for goalkeepers that coaches them in the basics of anticipating crosses and dominating their area.

Set up

You need balls, bibs, cones and goals, in an area 50 x 15. We used 4 players in the session.

How to play it

We begin with a basic crossing set-up, as shown, with a goal placed centrally on each 75-yard line. Crosses from each side are delivered from any of three points on the shorter touchline and should be hung in the air giving the keeper time to assess and adjust the flight of the ball. In the first progression, when a keeper catches a cross from one server he must throw the ball out to the other. Next, only serve from one side with both keepers challenging for the same ball. Now both have a decision to make – do they come to catch the cross, or call ‘away’? Also vary the crosses, from high balls to low centres. You can add attackers to make the session opposed.


Postioning, timing of jump and handling skills all important for this vital skill.

    1. One of the servers delivers a cross to the first goalkeeper
    2. The second serve then crosses from the other side to the other goalkeeper

    3. Crosses continue from different positions with ever-changing angles and lights
    4. Ensure that each keeper takes crosses from both sides of the area and from different angles

    5. Now both keepers go for the same ball, jumping against each other – shout ‘keepers’ if the can catch it or ‘away’ to alert defenders the ball is lost
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