Soccer Coaching Blog | Professional Soccer Coaching Advice


Stop or change direction to create quick, usable space

I’ve been getting my players to stop and turn or change direction to create themselves immediate space the can use to play a pass or cross the ball or just shoot.

Space is vital to youth players because it gives them the confidence to try things out and to make better use of the ball.

I’m talking stop turns or flicks inside but also just getting your players to stop when they are running side by side with an opponent – as long as they stop the ball as well then they will lose their opponent for a split second giving them time to quickly use the ball.

Sounds simple? Watch the clips below of how the professionals create space with a flick or turn and you can see the effect it has on their ability to use the ball:



Berbatov uses his imagination

Watching the Manchester United versus Liverpool game I had to admire the moment of unforgettable imagination and technique from Dietmar Berbatov.

It was a moment that exploded into the imagination, and left me wondering what Berbatov had been doing during the two years of strolling and loitering which had United’s fans wondering if the £30m man would ever come good.

It’s the kind of thing I love to see in matches, an outrageous piece of skill that works – I could watch the clip over and over again. Hopefully a lot of kids will be trying to do it in their backgardens and we will see it attempted on the youth pitches we play on.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH BERBATOV\'S GOALS<

Follow my blueprint and get your players doing it.

This skill is all about timing – Get your players to:

  • Get into line with the flight of the ball, keep their eyes on it.

  • Kick the ball cleanly, not hard – the movement of their body will generate the power.

  • Jump up, leaving their kicking foot on the ground and use their other foot to propel them upwards.

  • Begin to fall backwards, keeping their eyes on the ball.

  • As their body sinks towards the ground, their non-kicking leg will go into the air. Kicking leg may still be on the ground.

  • When the ball is in ideal range, whip the kicking leg off the floor into the back of the ball, bringing your other leg back down quickly. The upper body should be almost horizontal.

  • As you fall, stretch out your hand to steady your impact with the ground. Twist your body to avoid landing on your back.




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