Use this fun shooting drill with players of all ages to practice basic concepts for many common offensive sets. You can build it up to be more complex, with more passes and tons of different shots!
Teach your offense in simple steps by “Chunking”. Practice small chunks of an offensive set or play before you try to put it all together in full 6-on-6 with Offense and Defense. This shooting drill helps you practice small pieces of common 2-3-1 and 3-1-2 Alley Dodging offenses.
College coaches spend lots of time on “Skeleton Offense”- just the bare bones. Run your players through the motions, locations on the field, and looks for passes and shots without the Defense. Each player should know what to do at each spot in your Offense if you want your team to be a high-powered offensive scoring machine!
Pro Tip: This is a great time to work separately with your Defense on core Team Defensive skills and concepts like On-Ball Approach and Off-Ball Positioning, Communication, Slides, Recoveries, and Clears.
Combine multiple skills in one drill! This drill starts with basic components of many useful offensive sets for 2-3-1 and 3-1-2 Formations. Plus your players have to run, cut, pass and shoot on target at the right time to work together with other players.
Make it more advanced for more advanced players! Use this drill with youth to high school and college players. Check out all the variations at the end to increase the difficulty with more passes and different looks and shots! Try a different one every practice!
HERE’S THE DRILL:
Important Note: This drill, like every shooting drill, can be done with our WITHOUT a Goalie. Shooting drills are only productive for your Goalies if the shots aren’t coming from too close, too hard, or too often. This could be a good time to work separately with your Goalies on Footwork, Save Mechanics, Hand Speed, Hand-Eye Coordination, and Communication.
Start your players in four lines, two on each side of the goal. One on each wing, where Attackmen usually play, and one up top on each side, where Midfielders usually play. Start all the balls up top.
Figure 1.) Blue 1 will Cut or “Clear Through” to the Crease. This is probably the #1 most basic offensive principal, no matter what plays or sets you run- Get out of the way of the man with the Ball! Blue 1 should cut to the middle of the field to create Space for the Blue 2.
Don’t let your players Dodge into Double Teams! This is a very common problem for younger and inexperienced players. If Blue 1 stands there, his Defender also stands there. Blue 1 Clearing Through to the middle forces his Defender to follow him. If his Defender doesn’t follow, Blue 1 is open right in front of the Goal. He is also open if his Defender Slides from Adjacent to stop the ball. No matter what the Defense does, Blue 1 has to Clear Through to the Crease!