Dealing with the Second Phase Shots

By Scott Housden -

The majority of crosses that goalkeepers have to deal with during a game are usually those that the goalkeeper is not able to gather cleanly. Therefore, they may have to punch or help the ball on or, rely on their team to deal with the cross whilst the goalkeeper calls ‘away’ and stays in line with the ball readying themselves to deal with a second phase save often within a crowded box. Furthermore, if the goalkeeper has attempted to clear the ball they may also be out of position.
These drills outlined below will allow you to work on this often under trained area that is an essential part of any game.

Set Up 1

  • Goalkeeper starts on any of the three cones.
  • On the servers call the goalkeeper moves back as quickly as possible towards the goal line and into their ‘set’ position (Balanced fast movement is essential as if the goalkeeper is off balance when moving it is almost inevitable that they will be off balance in their ‘set’ position).
  • The server then a simple volley for the goalkeeper to make a simple save.
  • Repeat 4 – 6 times at each cone.
  • Once the goalkeeper is comfortable with their movement backwards and their ‘set’ position the server can then play more challenging shots, repeating 4 – 6 times.

Coaching Points

 We are simulating that the goalkeeper has been pulled out of position after punching a cross clear.  Therefore, considerations must be made in dealing with what would be the ‘second phase’ or shot coming through a crowded penalty box inasmuch that the goalkeeper must retreat to just of his ‘line’ in order to give themselves as much time as possible to deal with shots or more likely deflections.

  • Movement back towards the goal line must be quick and balanced and in line with the ball. This is best achieved by turning ‘side on’ (as in the diagram on the left).
  • Keep your hands ready and above waist high when moving back and ensure your nose remains over your toes.
  • When in position bring your front foot back into your ‘set position’
  • By moving back to your goal line in this fashion it enables the goalkeeper to move into a balance ‘set position’ more quickly than running backwards (running backwards encourages your head backwards making you off balance and slower to react).

Progression 1

With the positioning of the mannequins we are simulating a crowded area (i.e. during a corner) and so the movement of the goalkeeper must be sufficient enough back towards the goal line in order to deal with potential deflected second phase shots.

  • Goalkeeper overarm throws the ball to Server.
  • Goalkeeper then moves over the cones on the goal line and then positions themselves for a cross.
  • The Server then throws the ball towards the mannequin at the near post, with the goalkeeper moving towards the ball and dealing with the ball as if under pressure and punching the ball clear. The goalkeeper must then reposition themselves back towards the goal and make a simple save from a volleyed shot from Server 2, repeating 4 – 6 times each side.


Progression 2

Include an attacker to challenge the goalkeeper for the high ball, adding pressure and forcing the goalkeeper to punch the ball.

The shot from Server 2 is more challenging.  If this shot is parried then the attacker can challenge for the parried ball, forcing the goalkeeper into a third phase save.

Repeat 4 – 6 times each side.

Coaching Points

  • Quick balanced footwork over the cones and into position for the thrown ‘cross’ from the side server (the coach can call wether the goalkeeper needs to position for an ‘inswinging’ or ‘outswinging’ cross).
  • Take shorter faster steps towards the ball and call ‘Keepers.’
  • Focus on the ball and not the attacking player when moving to punch the ball clear.
  • Move quickly back to position yourself just in front of the goal line – in line with the ball.
  • Stay on your feet for as long as possible and avoid anticipating deflections.
  • If you have to deal with a late deflection then make yourself as big as possible and be prepared to recover and make a third save from the rebound.

 Progression 3

Lay 2 mannequins down with the spikes in the ground and propped up underneath with a ball so that a ramp is formed.  Server 2 can now shoot from behind this from which the ball could deflect off (simulating a deflection from a player in a crowded area).  These mannequins can be moved to a more central position as well.

It is essential that the goalkeeper deal with the first phase effectively and then the second phase, again simulating their action during a crossing phase of a game.

Repeat 4 – 6 times each side.

By Scott Housden
Scott is both a UEFA ‘B’ and UEFA ‘B’ Goalkeeping Coach and holds a Masters in Sports Management.  He has been a goalkeeper coach in professional football in the UK and Australia at First Team, Academy and Women’s levels.  He currently runs a Goalkeeper Academy in the Western Suburbs of Brisbane, Australia.

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