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Attacking Aims

by Roberto Di Matteo in Attacking

This session improves and develops attacking balance when going forward. Often we have to switch play or break out at pace, and it’s important that we retain structure and don’t become one-dimensional. To help achieve this we adopt our club philosophy of utilising the full width of the pitch when attacking. We will practise this in training in the same way that we construct it in a match situation, ensuring that players understand how and when to move the ball from one side of the pitch to the other. MORE

Forward thinking

by Mick Wadsworth in Attacking

At any level, the ability to attack the opposition with quick, positive forward play can yield terrific rewards. This session requires determined and aggressive forward movement and clever passing, and the key is to always be moving forwards or sideways – so never backwards, and never remaining stationery. If players follow this simple blueprint, we, as a team, have the makings of fast, invasive attacks, which are so dangerous. MORE

Switching play

by Nigel Clough in Attacking

This session is about maximising space so as to be able to switch the ball quickly in creating positive attacking options. And at the heart of this is helping players recognise when to play forward and when to switch play. It’s important to practise this because moving the ball quickly with both short and long passes gives us the chance to create 1v1 situations or overloads, which are key situations for exploiting the opposition. Keeping possession under pressure and knowing when to switch is a major part of our style of play. For that reason, we’ll work on this type of session frequently. MORE

Changing the point of attack

by Owen Coyle in Attacking

Being able to quickly, efficiently and, at times, discretely change the point of attack is crucial for any team. The goal of this session is therefore to demonstrate the different ways the ball can be transitioned from one side of the field to the other, as well as highlighting what types of passes and movements... MORE

Penetration in behind

by Brendan Rodgers in Attacking

It’s an engaging session for the players because it’s about creating and scoring goals and that’s what players love to do. It’s an attacking theme, based on expression and creativity with combination play, so players really enjoy it. MORE

Breaking lines

by Michael Duff in Attacking

This session is all about breaking lines in possession. Due to the way we play, our players need to be able to understand when to switch the play and when to split the opposition, all with the aim of penetrating opponents and allowing us to play forwards. MORE

Linking through your centre-midfielder

by Carlos Carvalhal in Midfield

The role of the centre-midfielder is a vital one in modern soccer and his effectiveness and resourcefulness is best practised with regular repetition of technique and job role. This is a session I first outlined when with Besiktas back in 2011, but so solid and reliable is the role of the midfielder that it is... MORE

Transitions

by Matt Murray in Skills and Techniques

Although this session is predominantly about transitions, it pays particular attention to pressing, making play predictable, communication, work to be done when in possession, and how to hurt the opposition with patience or a killer pass. What makes the session engaging is that it progresses through a number of different practices, each focusing on lots... MORE

Attacking overloads and positional play

by Chris Davies in Attacking

This session takes the form of a number of progressive exercises, each designed to develop players’ ability to progress the ball through the pitch. The idea is to create overloads because without them the game can become dependent on 1v1s, and that can mean it’s difficult to progress the ball unless you are far superior... MORE

Possession and finishing

by Jimmy Bell in Attacking

This is a possession session that develops into a finishing challenge. It requires high tempo throughout and lots of legwork from players. At every club I’ve worked at there has always been real attention paid to the core principles of possession and work rate. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing the principles learned from... MORE

Keeping the ball to move forwards

by Steve Foley in Attacking

This session is based around a series of possession-based practices that are aimed at breaking the lines to move forwards when possible. It involves lots of varied passing techniques and good decision making. It also begins with a warm-up that is relevant to the topic, one that will prepare the players for the activities that... MORE

Supporting from deep

by Dougie Freedman in Attacking

This session is about forward runs and the ability of players to work at pace, supporting from deep or getting beyond a front striker to attack danger areas. For teams looking to build attacking play, intelligent forward running is essential, as is the timing and execution of those breaks. Players must also work to vary... MORE

Premier League possession

by Ian Holloway in Skills and Techniques

This multifunctional, directional session is about game-realistic play, positive moves and developing short and long passes. It is important to practise this because possession is key at any level of the game, but particularly in the Premier League where sides can be so ruthless when they have the ball. This session encourages players to receive... MORE

Technical training session

by Anthony Hudson in Skills and Techniques

This is a broad training session that enables players to practise a range of skills across multiple exercises. It rehearses ball skills in terms of tidy, quick and intelligent passing, plus finishing in and around the box. It’s also excellent for movement, closing down and positional awareness. These ranges of skills are essential for any... MORE

Passing patterns

by Steve Tilson in Skills and Techniques

This session works on players’ ability to play one-two passing moves in order to create space and to get in behind the opposition’s defence. The practice is comprised of initial unopposed passing drills which familiarise players with movement, awareness and link-up play, before progressing onto a competitive 8v8 game. The entire session lasts 75 minutes... MORE

The passing diamond

by Paul Buckle in Skills and Techniques

The passing diamond is a coaching move that, while simple in its set-up, is crucial for players in rehearsing passing accuracy and tempo. It is also important for general ball work and encouraging the use of both feet. Modern day football is built upon a constant passing game, so the ability to conduct simple and... MORE

Concise corner kick routine

by Les Parry in Set pieces

This is a set-piece corner kick routine that relies on a quality ball into the box and the intelligent movement of attacking players. Set plays provide great opportunities for scoring goals because the ball is stationary, players cannot be tackled and they have the freedom to work space knowing where they can expect a delivery... MORE

Link-up combination play

by Ricky Sbragia in Skills and Techniques

Movement, support and running off the ball is essential in the modern game, and fine-tuning these abilities in players can really enhance attacking options throughout the team. Therefore, this unopposed drill is designed to examine receiving, touch, lay-off, link-up play and third-man running, so that players can work together in tight areas to maximum effect.... MORE

Playing short and long

by Luke Williams in Skills and Techniques

This session examines when to play short and long. It’s a set-up that, despite its simplicity, addresses a key question that a player needs to ask himself every time he gets the ball, so is actually a mental principle that it’s vital to practise. And whilst it’s not an original question, the way we search... MORE

Exploiting possession

by Tony Mowbray in Formations and Tactics

This session is focused on creating opportunities from possession. Every team should work on their ability to maintain and exploit possession because, when harnessed to attacking intent, keeping hold of the ball is the best way to break down defences and create goal-scoring chances. This kind of play greatly increases a team’s chances of winning... MORE

Don’t reinvent the wheel

by Steven Pressley in Skills and Techniques

This session is about short, sharp passing and use of possession. We use tight areas to improve players’ footwork and put demands on them to be able to work the ball with confidence, while those out of possession must close down with intensity. We believe this session has everything players need and want. The lead-up... MORE


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