Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: dribble, drills, exercises, messi, pass, passing, Ronaldo, shoot
When players feel pressure in matches, it can often affect their ability to make decisions. You will undoubtedly have players who dribble brilliantly in training, yet “panic pass” in matches. Other players will hesitate when on the ball and a great opportunity to pass to a team mate is often lost.
Knowing when to surge into space with a dribble or when to switch play with a good pass comes from lots of practice – and you can’t expect players to learn this on their own.
Therefore, it’s a great idea to set up situations where they have the choice, because making that call can be vital to their development.
This session shows players where options present themselves, then develops into a small-sided game, in which the right decision will give their team the advantage.
How to set it up
- Create a playing area measuring 30×25 yards.
- For this session you’ll need bibs, cones and balls.
- There are two teams of four players.
- Set up three small goals – spaced equally apart – along the longest sides.
- Each team must defend its goals while trying to score in the other three.
- Players score by dribbling or passing the ball through the poles.
- Players must react quickly to situations around them, looking for areas on the pitch where there is space to exploit. They should look to mix dribbling with passes to team mates, but every decision is made with the aim of retaining team possession.
- Play for 15 minutes.
Developing the session:
- Develop the session by making the area 50×30 yards with two five-yard end zones.
- The players must get the ball into the end zone by passing to a player who has run to meet the pass, or by dribbling into the end zone themselves.
- Players are not allowed to stand in the end zone waiting for a pass – they must always be on the move.
- You can award an extra “goal” if the attacking team makes five consecutive passes before scoring.
- If players find the session easy, reduce the size of the scoring zone at each end by a yard. For younger players, increase the size.
Why this works:
This practice rehearses players in the logic that clever dribbling can move the ball into areas where there is space to be exploited. A final pass to a team mate should make the creation of goalscoring chances that much easier.
Players are also encouraged to score with a pass which represents a quicker route to goal than a dribble. The decisions depend on the player’s ability to read the space and that will come as they practise this session.
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Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: Alonso, Barcelona, iniesta, messi, spain, trtaining, warm ups, xavi
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: Barcelona, drill, exercise, messi, passing, spain
One of the great things about passing teams is that they know how to use space to maximum advantage, and the effects can be devastatingly good.
Even as individuals, the ability to anticipate where a team mate is moving to is an important part of player development – and one that initially takes a while to master. While this can be frustrating for coaches, rehearsing and practising using space will eventually work, so always persevere.
The size of the playing area is important in this practice, because the bigger that area the easier the task is. Therefore, start off in a space measuring 20×20 yards, then make it bigger or smaller depending on how your players cope.
How to set it up:
• In your 20×20-yard area, mark a halfway line to create two boxes.
There are three attackers and two defenders.
• In one box it’s 1v1, while the other has two attackers and the remaining defender in it.
• The idea of the game is to have continuous 2v1s in each box. So for their team to retain possession, one of the attacking players has to move each time the ball changes boxes.
• Start the game in the box that contains two attackers. They must combine before passing to their team mate in the other box.
• As soon as the ball is passed, one of the two players must move into the other box to create a new 2v1 overload. All other players must remain in their designated box.
• While attackers must always be on the move, looking to create space for the pass, defenders are more cautious. They defend passively at first, so can only intercept or force an error, rather than tackle. If they do succeed in winning the ball, they simply put it out of play.
• Time to see how long the attackers can keep possession of the ball.
• Play for five minutes then swap teams around so each player has a go at both attacking and defending.
• Award extra points for feints or skills that create space for the pass.
Developing the session:
• You can develop the session by instructing attackers to make three passes before sending the ball into the other box.
• Encourage attackers to produce a two-touch game so that they control and pass in one fluid movement.
• Allow defenders to tackle.
Why this works:
To retain possession of the ball, attackers must create space to pass into, at the same time sending the defender the wrong way. They need good skills and sound technique to prevent defenders from winning the ball. This is a skills workout that makes players think about moving, and how their movement creates space that the defender cannot defend. You should see signs of improvement in your players if this session is run over a handful of consecutive weeks.
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: Barcelona, barcelona-usa, iniesta, messi, one touch, passing, skills, two touch, U11, youtube
Well we may be finally putting things in place to do it but I was surprised by how advanced some teams are across the pond inAmerica. They sure are building for the future.
An U11 team inCaliforniahas created its own little area ofSpaintaking their inpiration from the masters of tiki taka,Barcelona. They’ve called their team Barcelona-USA, and play in the same strips as the Catalan giants.
The video that got everyone purring was Barcelona-USA’s U11 Cal South State Cup semi-final against Arsenal FC – no slouches themselves at this level.
But in an epic 13 minutes of football, these young players executed some of the greatest one-touch, two-touch passing moves that you’ll see anywhere, anytime.
According to their coach: “These performances are no accident. It takes meticulous training, studying, and artistry — a craftsman. You can not just throw 11 players on the field and ‘talk’ about possession. That’s just talking. And anybody can do that… you should be asking yourself: ‘Do I really care, or am I just a talker?’”
Are you watching England?
See the video everyone’s talking about below:
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Posts From Dwyer Scullion, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: Barcelona, drill, euro 2012, iniesta, messi, passing, spain, xavi
Spain can keep hold of the ball with passing and movement almost at will – and it is something youth teams can strive to emulate. But it’s not just Spain that are showing how player technique and fast passing can result in huge success for the team. Fast passing is a key element of Euro 2012.
But it’s not just a case of telling players to pass they need to practice until they have the technique, touch and composure to make it work.
Try this session to help create a good passing team.
- In order to be composed on the ball, players need to have a good first touch and passing ability.
- When keeping the ball, communication is vital and helps make up the mind of the player in possession.
- Passing the ball is not enough. Players need to follow this up by moving off to receive again or to create space for the player on the ball.
- Use a 40 yards long by 30 yards wide area for the session.
- Use a pitch 60 yards by 40 yards for the development.
How to play it
- Split the group into two teams.
- You pass to the black team and call the name of a white player to run into the other half to win the ball.
- If the white player wins the ball, play transfers to the white team’s half and the black player who gave the ball away tries to win the ball back.
- If a team makes five passes another opponent runs in to help his team mate.
- If another five passes are completed, another opponent runs in to help and so the exercise continues.
- The winning team is the one which forces the opposition to commit the most players into their half during 15 minutes.
How to develop it
- Play a small-sided game with four neutral players playing outside the pitch as full backs and wide players.
- Outside players are limited to two touches and cannot pass to each other (use cones to block the channels). T
- he team in possession tries to build an attack and score by using the outside players.
- This game ensures the team in possession is spreading out and using the whole of the wide pitch.
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: atletico madrid, Barcelona, bilbao, falcao, messi, Real Madrid, Ronaldo, simeone, youtube
Spain is indeed blessed with some great players in La Liga – Barcelona’s Argentinian Lionel Messi and Real Madrid’s Portuguese attacker Ronaldo, but the man making the headlines in the Europa League final was Falcao. He also finished as the tournament’s top scorer for the second year running, hitting the back of the net on 12 occasions.
Atletico beat Athletic Bilbao 3-0 with two first half goals from Falcao.
The two goals were both of wonderful quality after receiving a pass from Diego down the right flank, he cut inside and curled a delightful effort into the top left-hand corner of the Bilbao net. proved it was no fluke 28 minutes later, collecting a low cross, skilfully dragging the ball back to rid himself of his marker and smashing it past Athletic goalkeeper Gorka Iraizoz from close range
But even more amazing both goals were score with what he regards as his weaker foot: Falcao explained: “I don’t know what to say; I hit both with my left foot. My right was just there to support my weight.”
Europe is indeed watching.
See the goals below:
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training, Uncategorized | Tags: Arsenal, baggio, Barcelona, brazil, Chelsea, dennis bergkamp, England, Germany, Italy, John Terry, Manchester United, messi, penalty miss, ruud van nistelrooy, southgate
John Terry, CHELSEA v Manchester Utd (Champions League Final 2008)
After a 1-1 draw on the night, Cristiano Ronaldo missed his spot-kick to put Chelsea within touching distance of the trophy, but his crucial slip sent the ball crashing against the outside of the post, leaving the England international on the floor and in tears.
Lionel Messi, BARCELONA v Chelsea (Champions League Semi-Final 20120)
Barcelona started the second half 2-1 up but Chelsea were down to 10 men. Messi had the chance to gain the psychological advantage but hit the bar and Chelsea went on win the game.
Denis Bergkamp, ARSENAL v Manchester Utd (FA Cup Semi-Final replay 1999)
Bergkamp could have won the game with a last minute penalty. The match was notable for a disallowed Arsenal goal, the sending-off of Manchester Utd’s Roy Keane for a second bookable offence, a last-minute penalty save by Peter Schmeichel, and finally and most memorably a winning goal by Ryan Giggs, intercepting a pass near the half way line, before taking the ball past five Arsenal defenders and scoring past goalkeeper David Seaman.
Ruud van Nistelrooy MANCHESTER UNITED v Arsenal (Premier League 2003/04)
With the scores level at 0-0, United were given a controversial penalty in injury-time after Patrick Vieira had earlier seen red for a kick-out at Van Nistelrooy, but the Dutch striker made it three consecutive misses from the spot after he rattled the underside of the crossbar.
Gareth Southgate, ENGLAND v Germany (Semi-Final Euro’ 96)
After Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle failed at Italia ’90, it fell to Southgate to end the hopes of the Three Lions on home soil six years later, as football ‘came home’ but then swiftly left for Germany on penalties.
Roberto Baggio, Brazil v ITALY (World Cup Final 1994)
The first World Cup final to be decided on penalties, it was a moment that would define Baggio’s career despite some of the great things he achieved for both club and country.
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: Barcelona, goals, messi, record, spain, youtube
Messi has now found the back of the net 234 times for the European champions, eclipsing César Rodríguez’s record of 232 made in the 1950s.
He is truly a great player – and we all know that is just part of his amazing all-round play.
His manager at Barcelona, Pep Guardiola says: “Messi doesn’t score goals, he scores incredible goals.
“There are no players capable of dominating a sport with such superiority … Messi can be compared to [the former US basketball star] Michael Jordan.”
Johan Cruyff said: “Messi is by far the best player in the world. He is incomparable, he plays in a different league.”
Sit back and enjoy this 15 minutes of Messi scoring goal after goal:
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: balance, ball mastery, ball skills, dribbling, messi, Real Madrid, weaving
During growth and development our balance improves through practice. From learning to sit to walking and running does not just happen; it needs to be learnt and developed.
Think about how you learn to balance on a wall or the branch of a tree – first time you are awkward and slow until you can use your balance to speed up.
So too in sport. Lionel Messi has a low sense of balance because of his height and has learnt that he can lean and weave and stop quickly or speed up without losing his balance. This makes him an ideal machine for dribbling a ball past players. Dropping his shoulder to fool the defender into which side he will go to.
Balance is dependent on feedback and feeding of information from sensory receptors so repetition of movement, like walking along a wall, is vital to being balanced in sport especially at speed.
The optimum learning ages are between 5 and 11 but all coaches should do some training that involves specific balance related exercises.
Wobble boards and balance cushions are great to use if your club has them but if not I use this exercise below to help players with balance. I will add a ball once they can do it without falling over to make it more difficult.
How it works
- This exercise is done by a player and three cones.
- It helps young players with balance, and is great fun to do as well with players trying to keep balance on one leg.
- The player balances on one leg then touches the top of each of the three cones with the foot of their other leg without it touching the ground.
- Touches should be light and quick.
- After three touches change the standing leg so the other foot is touching the cones.
- Players should do the it three times with each foot.
Filed under: Dave Clarke, Soccer Coaching, Soccer Fitness, Soccer News, Soccer Refereeing, Soccer Skills, Soccer Team Management, Soccer Training | Tags: Barcelona, England, learn to lose, learn to win, losing, messi, mourinho, Real Madrid, Ronaldo, winning
It’s okay to show some emotion…
Many psychologists believe you shouldn’t deny children the opportunity to show their emotions when they lose. It’s okay to feel upset but they need to know where the boundaries are in terms of displaying emotion. Set standards of behaviour for your players and have sanctions if they don’t follow them. For example, showing dissent towards a team-mate or the referee means they start on the bench for the next game. They will soon learn to control their emotions better. Always acknowledge your players’ disappointment and show sympathy but emphasise the positive elements of the performance. It is important that players go home after a game with a positive mindset.
They should know that, despite the result, they have achieved and learned something.
Win as a team, lose as a team…
Football is the ultimate team sport and no one individual is ever responsible for a win or a loss. Create a team sprit where players encourage their team-mates rather than point blame at individuals. Good teams have been ripped apart over the course of a season by one or two ‘blamers’. If you have any of these types identify them quickly and speak to them about their attitude and the effect it is having on the team. Try giving them responsibility within the team as ‘motivators’ instead. It is then their job to go straight over to a player who has made a mistake and get them back in the game.
Remember you’re the role model… You cannot expect your players to accept losing if you don’t. You need to keep your emotions under wraps especially in front of the players. It is often easy after a game to look for excuses, but is a lot harder to look at yourself and your players and ask, ‘What could we have done better?’. Despite what many armchair critics think, referees are very rarely responsible for the results of matches. Develop a ‘never blame the referee’ culture in your squad and lead by example. Encourage players to shake the referee’s hand after games and thank him for doing his job.
Focus on performance… If you are going through a bad patch of results, one way of keeping players motivated and focused is to de-emphasise winning and focus on improving skills. Set realistic goals within the game – for example, “This week I want us to make eight out of 10 first-time tackles”. This means if the team achieves its goal the players win, regardless of the result.
Watch players show their emotions after losing: