Apply pressure, regain possession and then use the ball in this three-part session. By MICHAEL PHILP MORE
Through the thirds – Practice
WHY USE IT
This session helps to build up players’ awareness and ability to play through an overloaded midfield.
Set up an area relative to the age and ability of your players, with a mini goal at each end. Make the area fairly narrow and long, to encourage vertical passing. Divide the area into thirds. Players are split into three teams, one of which is neutral.
HOW TO PLAY
Players are locked into their thirds. The game is multidirectional, so if a team scores in one goal, they then attack the opposite goal. The neutral players support the team in possession.
Encourage the middle zone players to play in a diamond shape, playing on different lines. Players should look to find the spare player, making use of their overload. Players should look to find the furthest forward available pass and middle players should look to receive to play forwards where possible.
The game can be progressed to allow one of the in- possession players in the middle third to break into the final third to support the attack.
1. One team (whites) start as neutrals, supporting the team in possession. Players are locked into zones
2. Once a team scores in one goal, they immediately attack the opposite goal
3. Progress to allow one in possession midfielder to break into the final third to support the play