5 v 5 - Movements Off The Ball

By Alex Trukan

This game is developed to improve players’ aerobic power, an ability which serves as a fundament of other conditioning components as well as aids player’s ability to recover quickly and efficiently improving recovery capacity. From the technical and tactical point of view, the practice focuses on movements off the ball. It also contains a lot of staying on the ball under pressure what develops players’ core strength. In addition to this, players are challenged to communicate with each other, both in a verbal and non-verbal ways.

Set-Up and Directions

Organise an area of approximately 25 x 35 yards. Divide this space further into 9 little boxes as shown on the diagram below. Place two goals, opposite each other on the end lines. Organise the group into two teams of 5 (including goalkeeper). Goalkeepers start in goals. Prepare a sufficient supply of balls to ensure tempo and flow of the practice.

The game starts with one of the goalkeepers playing the ball out into his teammates. The objective of the attacking team is to score in the opposite goal. Normal rules of throw ins apply.

As soon as an attacking player receives the ball, he is not allowed to dribble it into another box. The only way to transfer the ball into the next box is by passing it. This condition will force other players to make supporting runs and move off the ball. At times as well, the player on the ball will need to stay on it until support arrives. This will improve his stability and strength.

If the opposition team wins the ball, the same attacking rules apply. Their objective is to score in the opposite goal. After a goal is scored, the game restarts from the goalkeeper.


The game should be played 4-8 minutes and repeated 4-6 times with 2 minutes rest in between repetitions.


  • 4v4/6v6
  • Four zones
  • One touch finish

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