Tag Archives for " drills "

Technical 1 v 1 Game

This week's Animated Drill Video describes fast paced and competitive exercise that incorporates every technical skill of the game except heading. [wpsharely id="6889"][wpsharely][/wpsharely] The diagram is being created with our online Session Designer that is available through the Member Drills Database. Please share your ideas for progressions and variations in the comments section below. Have a

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Competitive Shooting Activity

When WORLD CLASS COACHING conducted a tour of Dutch club a few years ago I was fortunate enough to attend. While visiting the Ajax Academy I watched a session presented by Robin Pronk, coach of the U17 Boys Academy team. The focus of his session was on passing combinations but after going through a number of progressions that lead to a small-sided game the team then moved to a series of shooting competitions.


Shooting Game
The teams from the 7 v 7 scrimmage are used for this

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The Purpose of a Set Drill

By Lawrence Fine, Author of the FineSoccer Coaching Bible.

Welcome to the FineSoccer Drills Newsletter. Todays topic is a bit different in that it looks at the purpose of drills instead of at a particular drill.

At some of the coaching courses they teach you to NOT use the word “drill”. Instead, we should use “game”, “exercise” or “activity”. Part of the reason seems to be that “drill” seems to have a

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Three Line Shooting

I usually end each session with a shooting exercise that incorporates aspects of the practice theme. One of the formats I often us is a simple three line set-up. I like this because you can do a wide variety of things from these basic starting position. The players are comfortable because we use this set-up often but I can make adjustments to place the emphasis where I want it.

I started using this as a regular part of my practices after

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Defending Small-Sided Games and Drills Competition

We recently asked coaches to submit their favorite defending drills and small-sided game. We picked one from all the entries as the winner and the coach received a $200 gift certificate to our site. The winner was Gabriel Celante for his Transitional Defending Game. Here's a look at the game.

Transitional Defending Game
This Transitional Defending Game focuses on developing and practicing defending cooperation, defensive pressure, and specific decision making while defending. This small sided game also focuses on developing transition to

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Advanced Tactics for the 4-2-3-1

The 4-2-3-1 formation has become the system of choice for many of the worlds top professional and national teams like Real Madrid, Manchester United and Brazil. As coaches at every level have watched these top teams play they have looked for ways to implement the system with their college, high school and youth teams.


The first step in introducing a new way of playing s to break the system down and identify the most important components. The was done very well by

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Warm-Up for Shooting

One of the perks of being apart of WORLD CLASS COACHING is that I have access to a large library of training sessions from some of the top professional, collegiate, and youth coaches. We have published books and DVDs on every aspect and topic of coaching. I often refer to our DVD especially for new

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Warm-Up for Shooting

One of the perks of being apart of WORLD CLASS COACHING is that I have access to a large library of training sessions from some of the top professional, collegiate, and youth coaches. We have published books and DVDs on every aspect and topic of coaching.

I often refer to our DVD especially for new ways to approach topics to keep my coaching fresh and interesting to the players I work with. I think we're all probably guilty of using the same few drills or exercises for a specific technique over and over. This can be a good thing because it allows us to focus on teaching the game rather than having to spend a lot of time teaching the drill. But changing things up on occasion can breath new life into a stale session and motivate players to perform at a higher level with the addition of new challenges.

In the past if I was looking for a new warm-up for a shooting practice I would have to scan through three or four DVDs to find what I'm looking for. This changed

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November Magazine Preview

Each month we add a new magazine update to the Member Drills Database. The magazine contains training sessions, videos and articles presented by top teams and coaches from around the world.

Here's part of a training session presented by Chelsea FC Academy coach Chris Woodword. The session focuses on 1 v 1, 2 v 1 and 2 v 2 situations that lead to a zonal game.

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Increasing Confidence in Possession

Teaching players how to protect the ball until the option to shoot or pass is available is extremely important if you want your team to keep possession and learn to build an attack. There will be times when there isn't an open team mate and they need to buy some time and create some space before support arrives.

The first thing I do when working on this topic is to have the players focus on the quality of their first touch. A player's first touch can put them into a tackle

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Shooting at the End of Every Practice

Like many coaches I focus on one particular aspect of the game during each training session. Sure, I try to train the technical, tactical, physical and psychological components around the specific skill so that the practice is as economical as possible. But in the past if my focus was on passing and receiving I wouldn't have thought about ending the session with any type of shooting.

When WORLD CLASS COACHING conducted a tour of Dutch club a few years ago I was fortunate enough to attend. While visiting the Ajax Academy I watched a session presented by

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First Practice of the Year

Is it time to start 'Fall' practices again already! If you're like me you found yourself asking this question this week. I don't know where the summer break went but it's gone.

Like the first few series of the football game, I like to plan out my first few weeks of training way ahead of time. I know I want to cover a number of topics including some technique to knock the rust off. I also want to start talking about how were going to

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Combining Skill Work With Agility and Fitness

Welcome to the FineSoccer Drills Newsletter.  Today’s activity combines simple skill work with agility and fitness.

Start with 6 flags (or cones) staggered to create a “zig zag course”.  The players start at one end and a server starts with a ball in the middle.

The first player in line sprints around the near flag and as he is sprinting to

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Finishing from Volleys and Headers

I've always had a standing challenge to my teams (U13 and below), if they score a headed goal, I buy ice cream for the next practice. It's been a way to encourage the players to try and score with their head if they can. This has been most successful with the girls teams I have coached. The extra incentive has become something that the team rallies around.

After spending a few weeks working on our combination play to score we played very well in our next games. Two of our three goals came from combinations in the middle of the field.

Another area that I've wanted to address

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Teaching the Movement of the Forwards in the 4-3-3

As I've written about several times, I've been going through the process of training one of my teams to play the 4-3-3 formation. I've always used a 4-4-2 or a 3-4-3 in the past so this has been a learning experience for me as well as the players.

I began with the defensive phase of the game to give the team a foundation to build on. They now have a good understanding of their responsibilities when we don't have the ball and that has made us a tough team create chances against. As a part of this we've worked a great deal on getting our wing backs involved by pushing them forward when we win the ball. This put emphasis on our wide play and we've been able to generate a lot of our offense by attacking the flanks with both our wing backs and wingers.

The area that we have been lacking

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Shooting Drills Competition Winner

It was difficult to choose a winner in our recent shooting drills competition because we received so many good entries. In the end we picked this exercise from Dennis Hillyard of New York. We were looking for drills that were easy to understand, used equipment all coaches have access to, provided a lot of repetitions for the players, were scalable to larger and smaller numbers and provided progressions that could be used as the players develop. This exercise meets all of those criteria.

Shooting Competition - First Time Shooting

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FC Barcelona - Style and Domination

FC Barcelona has become the world’s top club and has set the standard for all other clubs to follow.  With more than a dozen major championships and counting over the past four years, the team has achieved remarkable success in La Liga, the Copa del Rey, the Champions League and also the FIFA World Club Championships.  Further, the bulk of the 2010 World Cup Champion Spanish National Team mainstays call Barcelona their home club.

What has prompted this run?  Certainly talented players including the likes of Lionel Messi, Xavi Hernandez, Andres Iniesta, Gerard Pique and others are critical to the team’s stunning run.  However, the Barcelona model is much more complex, as the coaching, philosophy, tactics, team culture and more all contribute to the spectacular results and consistency that have been the hallmark of the club in recent years.

A new book that we've just released call, FC Barcelona: Style and Domination, A Tactical Analysis of FC Barcelona examines the special qualities and practices that have been critical to the club’s recent success.  From a profile of the manager and summary of the club’s overall

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Forward Passes and Runs

As I've discussed in earlier posts, I think that most coaches agree that our players don't watch the game being played at the highest level enough. Kids in countries where soccer is part of their culture grow watching professional player every week so when it comes time for them play they have a rich source of creative ways to break down defenses. They've watched Messi and Iniesta rip apart a back four with quick passing combinations and then tried the same thing with their friends at the park. Our players need to be given examples of ways to create goal scoring opportunities so they can look for those situations

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Adding Creativity to Diamond Drills

As I've written in previous posts, I enjoy incorporating diamond drills into my sessions because they provide all of the principles of attacking in a dynamic format that keeps the players moving and engaged. In one post on 'Diamond Passing' I shared some progressions on the diamond passing drills that I've used in the past. Over the last two months I've introduce these to my players during a number of practices. They've done a great job with them and I can change the pattern on the fly just by saying, "Layoff-and-Go", "Overlap" or "Play the Forward". I've also seen the movements from these exercises occur in scrimmages and games so the players have made the transition between practice and practical application.

During the winter my club participates in Futsal since the Midwest winter makes it tough to stay outdoor year-round. For those not familiar with

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Beating the Offside Trap

I've never been a fan of teaching youth teams to operate an offside trap. My feeling is that the time spent teaching this tactic is far better spent training players to better understand defending. You're also leaving the success or failure of your defense in the hands of the referees. Even with very good referees, your only one missed call away from a breakaway and likely goal.

I do believe that it's a good idea to spend some time teaching your players how to beat the offside trap. This knowledge is not only useful against trapping teams but also against teams that play a regular pressure-cover-balance defense. A book I've taken some ideas from is, 'Offside! - How to Coach It, How to Use It, How to Counter It.' This book does a great job of explaining how teach the tactic as well as how to beat it.

There are a number of different ways that you can combat the trap. I focus on four

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