Passing and Dribbling Square

By Alex Trukan

The passing and dribbling square exercise is focused on improving technical skills along with physical capabilities. The main emphasis is placed on aerobic endurance maintenance which serves as a basis to improvement in anaerobic power and capacity. Apart from that, this practice enables the group to develop two different core skills – passing and dribbling. That can be used to suit the needs of individual players.

Set up and Directions
Organise a square as shown on the diagram below (area size depends on the number and characteristics of players). Divide a team into two groups. One group of 4 players takes positions around the square with one ball per group. Every player from the second group needs one ball each and should take starting position inside the square.


The outside group passes the ball to each other in a clockwise or anticlockwise direction. Players inside the square dribble and try to avoid the ball that circulates around the square. Dribbling players should be challenged to do tricks, use only right/left foot or use certain parts of the foot.


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As a progression, outside player can now pass the ball to any player which is available. That will challenge them to look for free spaces and gaps between and around dribbling players.


One defender can be introduced inside the square to make it harder for dribbling players. To score points, a defender needs to stop the ball with sole of his foot.


The exercise duration is 10-15 mins. That should be repeated 2-4 times with 2 minutes rest in between. Only one set should be applied.

- Passing group inside the square
- Add defenders inside the square
- Pass to any available player outside the square
- Floater inside the square available for a one-two

By Alex Trukan, Development Coach, Nottingham Forest

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