Develop your players' ability to play through a crowded midfield with this three-part session. By ROBERT FLEMING MORE
A warm-up that will teach your players practise dribbling the ball with two feet and help them to learn how to change direction quickly
Difficulty rating ☆☆☆★★
The difficulty level increases with the speed at which the player tries to dribble because they have to use both feet. The initial pass and receive is done at pace so the first touch is also key.
For this warm-up you will need to use an area of 10×10 yards and create a ‘staircase’ of one-yard cones either side of a central point. We’ve used three players and you will also need ball and cones.
How to play it
Players stand in a line opposite the coach at a distance of 10 yards. The coach plays a crisp pass to the first player in the line. He returns the ball with his first touch and then follows his pass to receive a return ball back from the coach at the bottom of the staircase.
On the coach’s direction the player either goes to the right or to the left. Running up the staircase the player makes repeated one-twos from the right foot to the left foot while working up the stairs.
The player then quickly dribbles to the back of the queue. The coach then starts the routine again with the next player in the line.
This type of two footed ball control is how players like Lionel Messi are able to control the ball so they can change direction and slalom through opposing players at will. Speed is vital once players get familiar with the technique.
- 1. The coach passes the ball to the waiting player with a crisp, accurate pass
- 2. The player must use one touch to return the pass, again with good weight and accuracy
- 3. Following the pass the player sprints to the coach who uses a short pass to return the ball
- 4. The coach points either left or right to show the player which staircase he has to dribble up
- 5. Using repeated one-twos from the right to the left foot, the player climbs the ‘stairs’