EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FOR GRASSROOTS SOCCER COACHES

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.

Passing and support play

Vital turnover ball

in Passing, Small Sided Games

Turnover of play is one of the most common occurrences in a football match, and equipping our players to know how to maximise space and possession in these situations means we can make best use of the ball. MORE

Intercept the ball

Steal the ball

in Defending, Small Sided Games

It’s all about positioning in this lively intercepting game aimed at teaching your players how to nick the ball back from the other team while it’s still in midfield MORE

Great game for accuracy

5V5 Fetch the ball

in Shooting, Small Sided Games

One team knocks balls off cones and one team scores by passing to the keeper from one end to the other. But the key to this game is that when a ball is knocked off the opposition have to get it back. MORE

Organised to attack

Organised attacking play

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session focuses on hitting wide areas with the use of group attacks and switching. It works on the basic play used to develop attacking moves to get from one third to the next to create goal scoring chances. MORE

Final Third tactics

Handball midfield

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session encourages players to be aware at all times of where they are on the pitch and concentrate on getting the ball through to the shaded areas where they can shoot at goal . MORE

Keep the ball or score

Possession or score

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session encourages strikers to have rapid shots at goal and to link up in the middle of the park with one-twos and one-touch passing. Defenders can switch play when in possession and spread out to keep the ball from attackers. MORE

Defend open goals

Don’t let them score!

in Defending, Small Sided Games

A very good session for getting players to cover the back because one team has no goalkeeper. The opposition can look for different ways to score especially shooting early or chipping the defence. Great for match play. MORE

Keep possession overload

Possession and movement

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session is all about possession and movement from a team, moving the ball from back to front with purpose and controlled possession. It’s not just about having the ball it’s what you do with it MORE

Battle for possession

Angles of attack

in Attacking, Small Sided Games

This session tests a number of developmental characteristics in players, from the technical – multiple and varied touches and passes of the ball, position-specific work and handling pressure – to tactical linking with players in similar positions and game understanding linked to rules and conditions MORE


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