Overload Possession Game to Develop Aerobic Endurance

By Alex Trukan

The following practice is focused on developing endurance to maintain high quantity of actions throughout the whole game. This physical component is fundamental to develop any other conditioning characteristics and is important in aiding and speeding up the recovery process. That is achieved in a simple to organise possession game which can be suitable for almost all of the age groups. It is based on passing and receiving combinations from target to target with a little bit of interference and pressure. It challenges the players to make movements off the ball, show up in good supporting positions as well as quickly combine play.

Set up and directions

Organise a 20 x 20 yards square and divide it further into four smaller squares using the cones as shown on the diagram below. Set 5 attackers inside the square. Organise two target players, opposite each other, outside the square as well as two defenders inside the square. One of the target players starts with the ball. Prepare a sufficient supply of balls.

The practice starts with a target player playing the ball into one of the attacking players. The aim of the attacking players is to transfer the ball to the opposite target player.


Players without the ball on the attacking team try to make movements off the ball to receive in a different part of the square to which they were positioned in when the ball was played out from the target player.


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Before the ball is played out to the opposite target player, it has to visit all of the four parts of the square. That will challenge the attackers to make movements off the ball and combine play. The play is then immediately restarted from the target player who plays the ball into the attacking team straight away. Defenders should be rotated every couple of minutes.



The game should be continued for 4-8 mins and should be repeated 4-6 times with 2 minutes break in between.


  • 4v2/5v3 in the middle
  • Target player rotates after playing the ball in
  • Increase/decrease the area size
  • Certain amount of passes before playing out

By Alex Trukan, Development Coach, Nottingham Forest

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