Penalty box precision

This is a pure technical session that works on finishing and movement. We will practise this at various intensities before taking what has been learned into a game situation.

As attacking drills go, this is an important one because it helps players become accustomed to attacking the goal from different angles, therefore making it game realistic.


Final third
Supply of balls, full-size goal, six-a-side goals, cones
Number of Players
14 (12 outfield, 2 goalkeepers)

What do I get the players to do?

This session is to be worked at relaxed, half and full pace for three minutes at a time. At the edge of the penalty box, create three lines of four players facing the goal – one at each side of the box (red and white teams) and the other in the middle (yellow team). Set up cones around the area as obstacles.

From the first line, a red player receives a pass from the coach positioned on the penalty spot, and shoots at goal. He then spins around his cone ready to lay a diagonal pass.


• The ball is served to the first red player, who shoots then runs back to the star

The coach now serves to the first yellow player, who shoots. This man runs behind the line of white players and down the wing where he is served another ball to be crossed to either the near or far post.


• Next, the yellow player weaves through the cones and takes a shot.

The red player lays a diagonal pass into an advancing white player, who shoots first time at goal.


• Red feeds a ball across the box for white to fire at goal, as yellow recovers to the wing.

Red and white now take up position around the six-yard box looking to convert yellow’s cross with a shot or header.


• A new ball is fed on the wing as red and white attack the six-yard area.


• The move is finished with a header or a shot.

At the end of the move, each player retreats to the back of their station. Restart using the second player in each line.

What are the key things to look for technically/tactically?

We look for technical excellence in shooting – the type of shot, and the ability to hit the target each time. We are expecting players to score with all four opportunities. The ability to make intelligent runs is obviously vital, as is care and attention over the delivery of a pass or cross. But it is the coach’s job to get the point across that, in any situation, technique should not be rushed.

How would you put this into a game situation?

We play 6v6 with two goalkeepers in a 50×40 yard area. There is no pressure from opposition players in the shooting session, so it’s important that the small-sided game is a live and pressured situation. We look for replication of the technical play, finishing, and movement, from the earlier session.


• Rehearsed running, crossing and finishing techniques are played out in a 6v6 game.

We play for 15 minutes before going back to the practice area where we attack on the opposite flank, before returning for another small-sided game.

Share this

Follow us