Soccer Drill: How To Play Defense

Scoring goals in soccer puts points on the board, but good defense wins games. Your strikers can be the best in the world, but without a strong defense supporting your goalie your team will not win the game.

The fundamental object of playing defense in the game of soccer is to prevent the other team from scoring. There are several ways to do this and all are important skills that when combined correctly can increase your chances of preventing a goal and stealing the ball.

The basic skill of soccer defense is to apply pressure to the player with the ball. This can be done by approaching a player with appropriate speed and angle to force the soccer player toward the touchline. By using this tactic you can actually use the end line as an extra defensive player. The end line cuts off the options for the offense as you force the player to it. It is important to use the appropriate angle of approach to the player with the ball. If you choose the wrong approach you can give the soccer player two options to escape. You want to approach the player at the right speed and angle to only give them one escape, and that is toward the end line. Check out the video here to see some simple applications of this skill in a drill setting. If you or your players can learn the best ways to use your angles and speed you will have a force to be reckoned with in the backfield.

Soccer Drill
Soccer Drill

Soccer Drill: How To Play Offense

When you think of offense on the soccer field you think of scoring goals. Players in the forward position are the highest goal producing position on the field. In order to get into scoring position, any player must work with his or her teammates to create space and opportunities for the ball to be played forward into the opposing team’s goal area. Playing the ball forward can be done using a series of dribbling, passing, player movement or runs, and sending high crossing arcs into the goalie area. This video will show a very basic drill that has a player passing a chip shot into the goalie box to create an opportunity for a shot. This drill can be done with a chip pass as shown, or a pass on the ground. This soccer drill can be modified to include passes from different sides of the field an the addition of defenders to make it more challenging to score.

Soccer Drill: How To Play Goalie

As I get older my admiration and respect for goal keepers increases. One thing that is a given, as your child grows up the players will get stronger and more aggressive so it is very important to learn the basic fundamentals early to prevent injuries later on. I have commented on this blog before about how I play in a men’s league with other soccer coaching friends, during these games we have seen very powerful players shoot very hard shots at our keepers. We even have had a goal keeper on our team injure his hand due to a rocket of a shot on goal. When shots on goal come they come FAST! So lets take this time to review the proper goal keeping fundamentals with this video.

It goes without saying that all goal keepers should wear gloves. Gloves assist in catching a ball and protect the hands from the force of a shot on goal. Special jerseys are made for goalkeepers that have padding in the arms and shoulders to protect you as you dive. Pants are also made that have padding on the hips to minimize injury due to impact.

One of the basic fundamental skills of a soccer goal keeper is how you hold your hands to catch a ball. It is important to hold your hands in a “W” formation. This will allow you to maximize the surface area of your gloves on the ball and increase your chances of holding on to the ball and minimizing injury to your fingers and hands.

Body placement in the mouth of the goal is equally important. You should line up your body with ball, always keep your moving feet moving to get in line with ball. Ideally you want your shoulders to be square with the ball as you collect it. Watch the video below for some pointers.

Soccer Drills: Why Are They Important?

Any good soccer player or coach knows that drills are a crucial aspect of maintaining a talented and well-prepared team. But some aren’t as keen and take the approach of learning through playing. This isn’t the right approach to soccer, and we’ll explain why.

First of all, soccer drills teach players the proper way to do anything from take a penalty to throw in. You wouldn’t sit down to a poker game only to find out you’ve got no idea how to go all-in, would you? The same applies here – knowing the rules and knowing the right approach not only saves you time, but stops you from potentially costing your team if you get things wrong.

Secondly, it’s also a great way to keep a team fit, as you’re not only maintaining your skills and knowledge of soccer – you’re also helping keep the entire team fit enough to go into every match at the peak of their physical ability. This is incredibly important – allowing your body to get out of sync with certain activities, whatever position you’re playing in, can damage your ability to perform should you be called on to perform in a role you don’t normally fill.

Lastly, it’s because every player needs to train constantly – there’s no excuse for not doing drills regardless of the sport you play. Performing at a professional level means taking it upon yourself to act professionally and remain dedicated to training and ensuring that every player on the team is competent.

Of course, you’ll learn and develop while on the pitch, but when it comes to training day, would you rather ensure you’re all at the top of your game, or just play soccer for an hour and go home? So check out all the drills we talk about on the site and help your team stay on form.