Be creative around the penalty area

This will help your team make killer passes into the final third, with clever play releasing players so they beat the offside trap and go 1v1 on the keeper. It is a great session for attackers to show off timing and technique.

Set up

Set up an area of 45×25 yards split into three 15-yard zones. We’re using 12 players in the session. You will need bibs, balls, cones and two goals.

How to play it

Play starts with the keeper. Players must be in the defensive and midfield zones – no outfield player should be beyond the offside line. Play in the two zones until a player can see a pass and communicates to a team-mate to run into the attacking third. The ball must enter the zone first to put the attacker through for a 1v1 with the keeper. No one else can go in the zone. If the defending team wins the ball, play now goes the other way and players must transfer into the opposite two zones, leaving the final third clear.


Players keep possession as they identify opportunities to penetrate the final third. Players off the ball must make well-timed and clever runs. It encourages good combination and link up play and ends with a 1v1 with the keeper.

1. No players should be in the final third – play takes place in the defending and midfield areas of the pitch.
2.The game starts with the goalkeeper, who plays into a player in the defending zone

3. It is important to time the forward pass correctly so it gets into the final third before the player
4. Attackers should communicate their run to the player with the ball and then finish in a 1v1 with the goalkeeper

5. When the opposition gets the ball play switched directions and all players must get out of the attacking third at the opposite end of the pitch

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