Develop a 3-man midfield

Use this small-sided game to develop a three-player midfield both in attack and defence.

Why use it

The majority of teams use a three-player midfield with the growing popularity of the 4-3-3 formation.


Play a small-sided, 3v3 on a 22×20-yard pitch with two mini goals at both ends. Two neutral players at the side work play for the team in possession.

How to develop a 3 man midfield

How to play

The attacking team look to score in a mini goal. They can use the wide neutrals to play give and go passes but neutrals are limited to two touches.

The defending team must send one player to pressurise the opponent in possession. The remaining two players support the pressing player and stay in a position to block the two mini goals should the attack pass forward and break.

The game lasts until one goal is scored, then three new attackers and defenders enter the pitch.


  • Team defending.
  • Pressing, covering, supporting.
  • Passing.
  • Movement off the ball.
  • 1v1 attacking and defending.
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