Foot Skills with Short Sprints

By Jebreel Bubtana

The exercise below will work on your players’ foot skills and aerobic endurance.

Set up and directions:

Set up the field as shown below with a 20x20 yard square in the middle and a bigger square on the outside. All but two of the players on your team will have a ball (figure 1).


The players with a ball will dribble around the 20x20 square whilst the two players without a ball jog around the area (figure 2).


On the coaches’ whistle, the players must leave their ball and sprint towards the nearest cone on the outside square. The two players who were without a ball will now go to the nearest ball and dribble around the area (figure 3).


The players now sprint back into the middle square and try to find the nearest ball (figure 4).


The idea is that the players compete to get to the nearest ball before another player. As there are more players than soccer balls, you will now have two new players who will jog around the area without a ball (figure 5).

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Whilst the player’s are dribbling around the area, you can get them to dribble around using different parts of the foot. For example, using the inside of both feet, using the outside and inside of both feet, using the outside and inside of one foot, using the laces and using the sole of the foot. This will help to develop their technical ability on the ball.

It is important that your players are sprinting as fast as they can on your whistle to keep the intensity of the exercise high and develop their aerobic endurance. After five sprints, change the type of dribbling to work on a different technique and keep repeating.

Coaching Points:

  • Soft touches on the ball to keep it close to your body
  • Head up to see where the space is in the area and dribble into it
  • It is important for the players to work hard as they sprint out then back into the area in order to be first to the ball, much like in a real game situation

Jebreel Bubtana
Director of Marketing and U8 Programs at BRASA Brazilian Soccer Academy
NSCAA Advanced National Diploma
NSCAA Director of Coaching Diploma
Follow me on Twitter @jib1989

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