Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: Chelsea, England, fast passing, lampard, long pass, pass like Frank, passing session, through ball
Chelsea and England midfielder Frank Lampard has built his whole game on the ability to thread a pass. His trademark long balls can split defences wide open and create space for an attacker to work in.
But he is equally good at playing the short game, using the ball to take out defenders or to put an overlapping winger in behind the defence.
If every team got its players to use passes with purpose they would be much more successful in creating goalscoring opportunities. And by the same token, nothing will destroy a team more than inaccurate passing.
So here’s a move that will help players practise passing so that it comes to them naturally during a match.
How to set it up:
Mark out an area 30 yards long by 10 yards wide using cones.
Place four players around the area, one on each side.
Use only one ball.
The players on the short ends pass long and short.
The players on the long sides must move to receive but can only pass short.
Get the players moving the ball around in triangles, anticipating where the next player will run to.
Mark out zones so the players on the longer sides are given some guidance of where to move to when they receive the ball.
If it is a short pass, they run into the end zone nearest the passing player.
For a long pass they are in the zone furthest from the passing player.
Why this works:
The way to familiarise your players in passing with purpose is to get them passing long and short. Players need to learn not only how to pass well, but to move into space so it is easier for the player on the ball to find them. The passing must be very accurate or the exercise breaks down.
In a match situation, coaches will often stand on the side of the pitch and see situations where a simple pass, long or short, could open up the opposition defence, but the opportunity is missed.
Practising the basics in a quick-moving scenario such as this will perfect technique as well as decision-making ability, so get your players doing this exercise to make them into mini Frank Lampards.
You can set up a few areas like this so the whole team is passing and moving at the same time.
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Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training, Uncategorized | Tags: Arsenal, Barcelona, choose pass, huddlestone, long pass, Manchester Utd, short pass, Stoke, tony carr, Tottenham
We’ve all witnessed a lot of passing in the past couple of months. Barcelona with short crisp flicks and tricks, Arsenal’s through passes, Manchester United defence splitting passes and Stoke City’s more direct exorcet missile passes.
They are all aimed at getting the ball into a position to score a goal – Barcelona take a lot more passes than Stoke to get the ball up the pitch.
And for all the clever passing that Barcelona can do sometimes getting one of your players to see a long pass will have much more effect than those short passes. If you can pass to a player further up the pitch why not do so? It isn’t a sin to play a long pass it’s just as skilfull and can be far more effective.
So what makes a player choose a pass? Communication from a team mate, space, time, vision and tactics. There is a lot going on in the mind of a young player when they have the ball at their feet.
They have to practice to give them the tools to deal with these situations and that come from you. Give them the tools show them how to use them then watch as they develop through games.
This is a nice easy drill to get them playing long passes.
Move the ball before you kick it
In a soccer match the ball is moving when you receive it, so when you practice your long kicking make sure you move the ball to make your kicking practice more match like.
The technique you need to teach your players for long kicking:
- Push the ball to the side, slightly in front of the body.
- Put the non-kicking foot next to the ball
- Kick through the centre of the ball.
To kick it long along the floor, you don’t need to follow through after striking the ball. Instead, strike it sharply and stop your follow through just after hitting it.
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: control, long pass, receive, technique, tired defence
When play is down the centre of the pitch, clubs are often criticized for playing direct long passes to the attackers. However if the pass is a good one it can create quick goal scoring opportunities.
A long pass is different to a long ball and if the opposition defence opens up and the attacker sees the chance to run into space in view of their team mates then they should do it.
Playing long passes doesn’t mean you’ve sold out and are playing the long ball game, they mean just that they are playing a passing game over a greater distance.
Long passes can be counter attacks that catch out the opposition especially when they are getting tired towards half-time or full-time. It does require good skills from the passer and the the player receiving the ball, and may require the receiver to adapt to the bounce of the ball or choice of left and right foot.
It is worth practicing with your players because they can use the long pass as an option in attack when they are finding it difficult to pass the ball up the pitch.
On my blog I have posted a diagram and drill to practice the long pass.
Try this exercise
Use 6 players for this drill to get accurate long passes.
How to set it up
In an area approx 10×40 yards, all the players stand in two lines at opposite ends and take it in turns to hit lofted passes. Switch to weaker foot.
Advance it by putting one player in each of the middle two zones. The player at the end side foots a pass along the ground to the centre of the playing area, where the nearest player returns it on their second touch. The player at the end controls it, then hits a lofted pass to the far side over the heads of both players in the middle. The sequence is repeated at the opposite end.
Watch this long pass from Tottenham’s Tom Huddlestone:
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: 2v1, 30 passes, 3v1, Arsène Wenger, Barcelona, long pass, passing, short pass, Thierry Henry, winning
I use combinations of 2v1 and 3v1 to get my players passing their way to goal.
Good teams pass more, and good teams pass successfully. Your team can be successful passers if you show them how to do it. It will soon become second nature and if they are passing they will stop their opponents from passing so much.
Practice playing your midfielders down the touchline working to create space for themselves on the wings. If they are tightly marked, they can combine with their supporting midfielder for a “short-short-long” ball; if they are marked loosely, they can turn with the ball and combine with one of the central strikers.
On this diagram you can see two of the ways I coach my players to beat opponents. Quick one-twos and clever running in both cases leaves the opponent behind and your players are advancing on the opposition penalty area.
Look at it in this way. If you are an under 7s coach give your players plenty of encouragement and let them experiment with their passing. It may be the first time they think in terms of passing to beat a player rather than just passing to a player who is open.
When you coach older kids you can talk them through it and just watch. Often they will be able to do it straight away, show them the diagram and get them into threes to practice give and go.
Watch this clip of Barcelona making 30 passes then taking a shot at goal… watch them passing and moving for each other until they create the chance to shoot… brilliant!