Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: attacking, score, shooting, take chances
Diamonds Add Sparkle
By David Clarke
If you want your players to score long range goals like Frank Lampard does from midfield, try this fun game that rewards anyone shooting from distance.
WHY USE IT
Shots from outside the penalty area are very effective at all age groups. They can go straight into the net past a bemused keeper or bounce back from a defender or keeper to give easy rebounds. It’s a great way to get your team scoring.
The pitch is diamond shaped to help draw the players towards goal. The number of players you use will determine the size of the pitch. We’ve used 12 players including keepers in a 40×30 yards area. You need cones, balls and a goal.
HOW TO PLAY
Play two attackers and three defenders in each of the two separate areas of the pitch. Players must stick to their areas as much as possible. The attackers are there for rebounds or shots from close range.
Players get points depending on how they score. The points system encourages players to shoot from their own half because the rewards are much greater: goals scored from a player’s own half are worth 5pts; from a rebound 3pts; scored in opposition half using a first-time shot 2pts; and any other goal 1pt.
This session came from Soccer Coach Weekly.
Interested in more exercises? Try these links:
1. Pressing in key areas – Steve Kean
3. Tomb raiders
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: attacking, late goals, losing, tactics, winning, winning 1-0
By David Clarke
Early last season I was frustrated with my players because they were throwing away matches by defending too deep in the last few minutes. We were playing 25 minutes each way and, for every minute except the last 10, we were the better team. Looking at my notes at the time, I was having trouble keeping my players focused on their formation for the whole match. Instead, as they neared the end, the team began to just clear their lines.
Lone attacker too deep
My lone attacker in the 2-3-1 formation we played was so deep, he was playing in our penalty area. So, when we won the ball, there was no outlet and it kept coming back until we eventually buckled under the pressure.
This is a common problem you see all the time, even at the top level of the game. If you are winning 1-0, why not just stop the other team scoring? It’s something the Italian clubs and national team have always been famous for.
However, to do this, you need to play a different formation. I found it difficult during the game to persuade my attacker to leave his deep position and take opposition players away from our goal by staying near the halfway line. In his young mind, he was helping the team win the game.
Makes sense to play the same way
There was no point in shouting at him during the game. I had to wait until training and explain it to him. Eventually, over the course of a few weeks he, and the team, realised that if we were winning 1-0 by playing a certain way, then it made sense to play that way until the final whistle.
However, we had a few tears along the way. My centre back took my instructions literally that we should be attacking in the last 10 minutes.
With a couple of minutes to go in one game, he charged up the wing with the ball and went past one, past two, past three… then he lost ball and the counter attack caught us out!
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: attacking, defending, movement, position, tight
This session is all about stopping the opposition players with their backs to goal turning with the ball, so they won’t be able to pass or dribble into the space behind your defence.
The idea of the session is to:
Stop forward or through passes.
Stop good dribblers from turning and attacking your defenders.
Force opponents away from goal.
What players need to think about
Make up ground to within touching distance of the attacker while the ball is passed from the server.
Position body between attacker and target player.
Stand slightly sideways on ready to move quickly in any direction.
Get a clear view of ball.
Tackle when attacker is half-turned and not screening the ball.
How to play it
Use the centre circle for this session or an area 20 yards in diameter.
2 players – 1 attacker and 1 defender – start inside the playing area, with the defender initially giving the attacker some space.
1 server and 1 target player start on the edge of the circle in one half, with the other server and target player on the edge of the other half. All 4 players on the outside of the circle should be spaced apart equally.
The attacker receives the ball from a server and must attempt to turn and pass the ball to the target player on edge of the other half of the circle.
Whatever the outcome, the drill is repeated with the attacker next receiving a pass from the server in the other half. Rotate players so they all have a go at being the defender.
How to develop it
The unused server becomes a target player. The defender now has to cut off two options for the attacker.
Increase the size of the circle.
Take out a 97p trial to Soccer Coach Weekly today.
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: attacking, communication, defending, direction, drills, exercises, match pace, position
When young players are involved in fast, action-packed matches they often lose their position and don’t realise what is going on around them. You find that the pace of some matches they play in will be just that bit too fast for them and they lose their soccer sense.
What I do with my teams is to play a fast, constantly moving game where players must think about position, action and direction.
How to set up and coach it
You need a 30 yard x 20 yard pitch. Use two teams of four players, and four mini goals. Create a triangle in the centre. One team defends the triangle the other team defends the four mini goals.
The team defending the triangle goal must nominate a goalkeeper whilst the other three players try to pressure and win the ball.
Play for 15 minutes then reverse the roles.
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: attacking, counter attack, how to win the ball, speed, winning
By David Clarke
Changing the dimensions of the field is a quick fix to a lot of problems.
Making the field larger gives the attackers and midfielders more space to show off their skills.
If a team is not scoring, increase the size of the pitch until they learn how to pass, shoot and score. Gradually reduce the pitch to the normal size and they will have learned what they have to do to score.
- Making the field smaller helps the defending team by reducing the amount of space they have to cover.
The problem: Your team is not taking advantage when they win the ball to turn defence into attack.
The solution: Use a long narrow layout with small goals to force players into fast, direct attacks through the middle of the pitch. Attacking small goals needs swift passing to break the defence down and create opportunities to score. The shape of the pitch will force play to be quick and direct.
Set up a pitch that is 50 yards long x 10 yards wide, to create a tunnel effect where the players’ focus is narrowed like a racehorse wearing blinkers. Play games of 3v3 with small goals. No goalkeepers. Restart with a dribble or pass from in front of the team’s own goal.
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: attacking, defending, drills, success, u8s, u9s, unopposed
I will often run an unopposed session to encourage my players to move the ball and support each other without the added distraction of defenders.However, to make the session more realistic to the game I will add defenders at the end to reinforce player learning.
Unopposed sessions allow your attackers to be more confident in receiving the ball because they get the success they require from doing it.
Using unopposed exercises for build up and combination play in attack is a good way of coaching your players to move the ball, and encourages movement to support the ball as play moves around the pitch.
In this session, strikers and midfielders combine with a neat lay off and a precise threaded ball to set up a shot across the goalkeeper.
Set up a 40 yards by 30 yards playing area with four mannequins (poles or cones will do), two cones and two goals. You need eight outfield players and two goalkeepers.
How to play it
- The forwards move away from the mannequin to receive a pass.
- The forwards set the pass back to the supporting midfielders.
- The midfielders return the pass into space for the forwards to spin and run after. The forwards now shoot across the goal.
The midfielder becomes the forward for the next turn.