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Small Sided Games

Small-sided games are games with a small number of players on each side, for example 3 v 3 or 5 v 5. The key point is that because there are fewer players, each player gets more touches of the ball, and there are many additional benefits.

Soccer Coach Weekly recommends the use of small-sided games as a key part of your coaching program, and as a subscriber you can access 128 specially designed games, in a format that you can easily print and take to training. Once the games are set up and running and the players understand the rules, there’s no coaching, and the players take responsibility.

Alternatively you can buy all the games in printed or ebook format here.

An example of a small-sided soccer game used to help players have more touches of the ball in a training session

An example of a small-sided game being used to teach strikers to shoot

The games in the section below will help your players to improve on individual and team skills. They are simple to set up, guarantee more player participation, with more passes attempted, and more goals scored.

Quick thinking

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

When you have a fast player quick thinking is vital to giving him the ball in areas he can exploit. In this game a wide ball can be create opportunities in midfield or to get him up the pitch to go 1v1 with the keeper. MORE

Fast pass game

in Passing, Small Sided Games

Ball control in tight areas is vital to building a successful team that can play through the thirds. The overloads in this session help players to develop their ability to pass and receive MORE

Hotshot

in Shooting, Small Sided Games

Use this lively attacking session to get your strikers working well with team-mates to set-up solid goalscoring chances for your team. This helps encourage players to shoot without fear of missing. It is a fast, attacking session, using off-pitch creators to help tee up scoring chances. MORE

Destroy defences

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session pulls defences apart with two strikers playing different roles, one higher up the pitch than the other. It gives space for clever midfielders to put attackers clear in the penalty area with space to shoot at goal. MORE

Three amigos

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session is all about making full use of the width of the pitch when attacking the final third using wingers or wing backs to rip the opposition apart the way Antonio Conte’s Inter Milan attack their opponents. Why use it Spreading play wide when attacking means it is much harder for the defending team... MORE

Ball watching

in Defending, Small Sided Games

This session helps defenders to use an overload to their advantage when attackers run centrally at them – they must press their opponents into making a mistake and win possession back. MORE

Pass or dribble

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session is designed to help coaches look at the decision-making of the players. Can they take on the defender 1v1? Or is the right decision to keep possession by passing to a team-mate? MORE

Fast finishing

in Shooting, Small Sided Games

This game puts a time pressure on players to score match-winning goals, much like in a real game when the final whistle approaches and a team needs to score. It’s a fun session that your players will really love. MORE

Control games

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session is all about setting up and supporting an attacker. If you want your players to learn how to score from a fast counterattack, this is a great session – and it also has possession and pressing action points. MORE

Support play

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

Players work on through balls, angled passes, chips and more. It trains players to time their runs, arc their runs, and be creative. The zones help players practise beating the offside trap. MORE

Magic box

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session uses an attacking overload to encourage midfielders to create scoring opportunities by combining with strikers in and around the penalty area. MORE

Quick attacking pair

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This is about your front two hunting down the ball, winning it and attacking together. It’s great for encouraging attackers to develop a relationship so communication is effective and scoring chances are increased. MORE

Twos and threes

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This simple game will teach your players how to win the ball and how to support an attack. This is a fast and attacking game with teams learning how to support an attack and where and when to play a pass. MORE

Jump to it

in Shooting, Small Sided Games

The training session is an excellent workout if you want to get your strikers on their toes and ready to fire shots at the goal. This is a strengthening and reaction exercise that gives players a good workout to sharpen up scoring instincts. MORE


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