How to Position on Crosses

Welcome to the Goalkeeping Newsletter.  Today’s topic deals with positioning on crosses.

When we talk about positioning and angles we usually are talking about situations when the ball is toward the middle of the field.  Positioning can be figured by using string that goes from one post to the other post and then the middle is pulled toward the ball so the ball is the vertex of the angle.  The keeper then has to position himself so that he can make a save on any ball inside the string.  This usually means coming off the line and being centered within the angle.

As the ball moves, the angle changes and the keeper has to react accordingly.

The thing to understand is as the ball goes wider and wider, there comes a time when the keeper will be positioned completely outside of the angle.

When the ball gets near the corner, the keeper will actually leave the angle and be more concerned with the cross than the shot

This doesn’t mean the keeper can completely disregard the shot but he can position himself to be more concerned with the cross than the shot and still be able to react and move to handle a shot when needed

Just like with angles from shots straight on, different keepers will position themselves different based on their strengths, weakness and also on the tendencies of their opponents.    In the diagram below this is a situation where different keepers might position themselves very differently.

While that keeper is right on the line, another keeper might be less comfortable and move much closer to the near post to protect against the shot

The best way to determine where you should position yourself when the ball is out wide is to recreate different situations you might see in a game and try different positions to see where you are most comfortable.

Have a great day!


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