1) 1v1 Drill Superb dribbling skills can be very useful for wide players. They must be able to beat their opponent down the wing and still have enough time to cut inside, to shoot, to square the ball, or to get to the end line to deliver a cross for the forwards to attack. When a winger run rings around the opposition it can lift the whole stadium and create positive energy throughout the whole team. This video from AllAttack demonstrates how to practice basic techniques for beating an opposing player. Notice the emphasis on awareness and decision-making. Knowing when to

1) 1v1 Drill
Superb dribbling skills can be very useful for wide players. They must be able to beat their opponent down the wing and still have enough time to cut inside, to shoot, to square the ball, or to get to the end line to deliver a cross for the forwards to attack.
When a winger run rings around the opposition it can lift the whole stadium and create positive energy throughout the whole team.
This video from AllAttack demonstrates how to practice basic techniques for beating an opposing player.
Notice the emphasis on awareness and decision-making. Knowing when to challenge a player one on one is just as important as being able to execute the move!
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• Skill rating: Easy
• Fun Rating: 3/5
• Number of players required: 2
• Equipment required: Ball
 
 
2) Cone exercise
Dribbling through cones is a great way to learn how to control the ball in close quaters. The following exercise from BetterSoccerDrills explores different ways of controlling the ball with the inside and outside of both feet. This a great exercise that your players can practice on their own at home or at their local park.
 
 
• Skill rating: Easy
• Fun Rating: 3/5
• Number of players required: 1
• Equipment required: Ball and cones
 
3) Advanced cone exercise
This drill from Become Elite takes the cone exercise to the next level by teaching players to control the ball at different speeds. Players can adapt these exercises to suit the space they have available and can use them to improve their cardio-vascular fitness.
 
 
• Skill rating: Easy
• Fun Rating: 3/5
• Number of players required: 1
• Equipment required: Ball and cones
 
Check out this goal scored by Ronaldo for Barcelona back in 1996. The goal prompted a standing ovation from the entire stadium.
 
 
 
4) Circle of cones
Of course, in real game situations, players don’t always dribble in straight lines. This simple drill from OnlineSoccerTraining uses cones in a circular formation to develop players’ dribbling skills and prepare them for more realistic game situations. 
Players travel clockwise and counter-clockwise around the circle using the inside and outside of both feet to avoid the cones.
 
 
• Skill rating: Easy
• Fun Rating: 3.5/5
• Number of players required: 1 or more
• Equipment required: Ball and cones
 
 
5) Cut-backs
Dribbling through cones can help to sharpen a player’s skills and technique and improve their fitness. But, when they start dribbling against real players, they need to react quickly and move the ball out of reach of their opponents. 
Practicing cut-backs will them to dribble the ball at tighter angles and avoid losing possession. This set of drills from Epic Soccer Training concentrates on dribbling in tight spaces and at sharper angles.
 
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 3.5/5
• Number of players required: 1
• Equipment required: Ball and cones
 
 
Top 5 Shooting soccer drills
 
The ultimate objective in a football match is to score more goals than the opposition. And while the process of kicking a ball into a 7.32 x 2.44 metre area may seem quite straightforward; in reality, it can be one of the hardest disciplines to master.
In a game situation, a player entering into a goal scoring position faces many challenges. They have defenders rushing at them from all angles, a goalkeeper closing down their angles, teammates calling for a pass, the noise of an excited crowd ringing in their ears.
Under these conditions, they must adjust their speed, balance, and position before striking the ball cleanly and accurately at the net.
 
6) Shooting from a square pass
Shooting can be made much easier when attackers both create space and receive well-weighted passes from their teammates. This drill from OnlineSoccerTraining offers practice for both assisting players and shooters.
 
 
• Skill rating: Easy
• Fun Rating: 3.5/5
• Number of players required: 2 or more
• Equipment required: Ball and goal
 
It is this kind of drill that will help your players to score goals like this one from Fernando Torres playing for Liverpool back in 2008.
 
7) One-touch shooting
Football at the top level is a fast game and elite players don’t always have time to take a touch before they shoot. Whether the ball is rolling on the ground or bouncing in the air, sometimes a one touch shot is a striker’s only option.
These drills from Reading FC Academy may look simple, but they will teach players how to adjust their body, head, and feet to manage a one-touch shot.
 
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 4/5
• Number of players required: 3 or more
• Equipment required: Ball and goal
 
8) Three goal drill
Chelsea FC practices this shooting drill from SoccerCoachTV as a fun exercise to help their players react and shoot in hectic game situations.  
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 4/5
• Number of players required: 5 or more
• Equipment required: Balls, goal and mini-goals
  
9) Lay-offs, turns, and chest control
This video from ProgressiveSoccer features five different drills that can be practiced in groups of three or more. These exercises work on shooting skills, short passing, and lay-offs.
Attackers have better chances of scoring when passed the ball in optimum positions. A good lay-off can make all the difference. If the weight of the pass is just right, the striker won’t need to break their stride or rhythm to strike the ball cleanly.
 
 
• Skill rating: Easy
• Fun Rating: 4/5
• Number of players required: 3 or more
• Equipment required: Balls and goals
  
10) Headers on goal
Scoring is not all about fierce shots or delicate chips with the feet. Around 20% of goals at the top level are scored from headers.
Heading drills may not be the most popular amongst young players, but they are amongst the most important. Ability to score with headers distinguish elite strikers from average strikers.
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 3/5
• Number of players required: 1
• Equipment required: Ball and wall
 
Top 5 Passing soccer drills
Great passing is arguably the most important quality of a great team. Even the very best strikers in the world rely on the great services of their mid-field maestros.
In whatever position (even goalkeeper), all players must pass the ball well. As demonstrated by the Ryan Giggs clip above, one stray pass from anywhere on the field can be the difference between victory and defeat.
Check out these top 5 passing soccer drills.
 
11) Basic short passes
To pass with accuracy, players must practice short passes with the inside of both feet. Here are some basic passing drills from ProgressiveSoccer that can be practiced on an indoor or outdoor pitch and are best in groups of three.
 
 
• Skill rating: Easy
• Fun Rating: 3.5/5
• Number of players required: 3 or more
• Equipment required: Ball
  
12) Shuffling passes
In an ideal world, players are always facing forward when making a pass. But in reality, they must often make passes while moving sideways (shuffling) in an unnatural or twisted position.
This simple exercise from OnlineSoccerTraining offers practice passing with both feet while shuffling sideways:
 
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 3.5/5
• Number of players required: 2 or more
• Equipment required: Ball and cone
 
13) The drive ball
Short passes are great for retaining possession, beating the pressure, and moving the ball methodically through the different zones of the pitch. However, sometimes it’s a better idea to exploit space by delivering a long pass (or a drive).
By practicing to drive a pass, players learn to bypass one or more zones of the pitch. All footballers, experienced and beginners alike, love nothing more than delivering the perfect ‘Hollywood’ pass.
This video from AllAttack clearly explains the technique for delivering a long drive.
 
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 4/5
• Number of players required: 2 or more
• Equipment required: Ball
 
14) The through-ball
One of the biggest assets a midfield player can possess is the ability to play a well-timed through-ball. The through-ball is used to exploit the space behind midfield and defensive lines. It can be used to open up play, build an attack, or to create a direct goal scoring opportunity.
In this group exercise from Coaches Corner, the concept of the through-ball is taught through repetitive drills.
 
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 4/5
• Number of players required: 4 or more
• Equipment required: Balls and mannequins
 
15) One touch passing
One touch passing requires great technique and game awareness. Players need to anticipate the position of their teammates and the opposing team before even getting the ball at their feet. This means keeping their head up and tracking their target while being fully aware of the position of the ball.
These passes can be used in midfield to bypass opposing players and to maneuver the ball into a more favorable zone. These skillful passes can also be used by attacking players to break up the opposing defense.
In this video from soccercoaches the Schalke 04 U-19 team can be seen practicing a complex sequence of short passing soccer drills.
 
 
• Skill rating: Difficult
• Fun Rating: 4/5
• Number of players required: 6 or more
• Equipment required: Balls and cones
 
One touch passing forms an essential part of the pass and move philosophy employed so successfully by teams such as Liverpool in the 1980s.
A later incarnation of Liverpool produced this wonderful one touch sequence in the 2010 Europa League semi-final against Atletico Madrid. Unfortunately, Dirk Kuyt could not provide the finishing touch.
 
Top 5 Defensive soccer drills
Football is often referred to as a ‘beautiful game’. However, great defense can stifle the beautiful fluid offensive movement that makes the game so attractive.
Some teams use their attacking prowess as the basis for their defense maintaining possession. Others prefer to employ a strong defense as a basis for their attack. Although there are many different ways to play the game, the principles of good defending remain the same.
Check out these top 5 defensive soccer drills.
 
 
16) Pressuring warm-up
Pressuring does not always require direct contact. Nevertheless, it’s one of the most important elements of defending. It certain situations, its not necessary to tackle the opposing player. Sometimes, closing down their angles and pressuring them is enough to force them to make a mistake.
In these soccer drills from The Coaching Manual, the players learn the basics of pressing:
 
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 4/5
• Number of players required: 9 or more
• Equipment required: Balls and cones or mannequins

17) Tackling
While pressuring is important, it is not the most effective tactic in every situation. A defender must learn when to pressure, when to back off, and when to tackle.
Tackling is the activity most associated with defending, but a good tackle is not always easy to execute. Tackling requires practice and good timing because if done incorrectly, a tackle could give the opposing team a free-kick or a penalty kick.
In this short tutorial from TheSoccerEssentials, the coach explains how a defender must accept the physicality of the game to fully commit to a tackle.
 
 
• Skill rating: Easy
• Fun Rating: 3/5
• Number of players required: 2
• Equipment required: Ball 
18) Sliding tackle
A good sliding tackle can be just as effective as a great pass or through-ball and can also get the crowd on their feet. However, an ill-timed sliding tackle can often result in an early shower for the guilty defender.
In this clip from U Soccer, the coach expresses the importance of learning to slide tackle properly in order to avoid unnecessary injury:
 
 
• Skill rating: Medium
• Fun Rating: 4/5
• Number of players required: 1 or more
• Equipment required: Ball
 
 
19) Defensive header
The defensive header is different the goal scoring type of header. The aim of the defensive header is to clear the ball from danger. This means heading it high, hard, and as far away from the danger zone as possible. In this situation, power is often more important than pinpoint accuracy. A well-placed defensive header, however, could also lead to a counter attack.
This is a great defensive heading game from SoccerCoachTV that can be adapted for groups of all sizes and emphasises the importance of heading for distance, height, and power.
 
 
• Skill rating: Difficult
• Fun Rating: 5/5
• Number of players required: 3 or more
• Equipment required: Balls 
20) Small-sided game
Many of essential aspects of 11 v 11 are learned through small-sided games. From grassroots level through to elite world level, these type of soccer drills are used to coach players of all ages through the finer intricacies of the game.
 
• Skill rating: Difficult
• Fun Rating: 5/5
• Number of players required: 11 or more (can be adapted for smaller numbers)
• Equipment required: Ball and goal
 
 

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Sports crazy father of six! Love all things Liverpool Football

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