Soccer end zone alley drill to coach 1v1 defending

1v1 defending should be seen as an important part of your soccer coaching programme. Your players will respond better on match days when they know how to tackle 1v1 situations. The only way to achieve this is with repeated practice but you can make defending skills drills more fun with the help of this end zone alley soccer drill.

The defenders in this soccer drill must have a ‘no one shall pass’ mentality in order to stop the attacker and have a chance to attack themselves.

To set up the soccer drill

For this soccer drill you will need an area with two 30 x 10 yard alleys with end zones. You will also need a few balls – try and get one for each player.

Soccer drill to get attackers dribbling past defenders in an alley shaped grid.

Player movement bar


How to run the drill

  • The attackers attempt to dribble past the defender to the opposite end of the alley.
  • If successful they wait and join the line coming in the opposite direction.
  • However, if they are tackled, then the roles are reversed with the defender joining the line and attacker becoming the new defender.
  • It’s really important to keep the tempo high. This makes the drill much more fun as the attackers try – and often fail – to remember to defend if they have been tackled.

What to call out in the drill

  • “Pressure away from the end zone.”
  • “Force the play to one side.”
  • “Be patient, don’t over commit.”
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