Practice - Passing & Receiving

Warm Up 5 - 10 minutes. Activity level - Mild ramping up. Space: General. 1 - 2 Players per group.

Passing Warm Up

The Game

Players in the grid are without the ball, players on outside each have a ball. Inside players move around the grid freely, receive a ball from an outside player and return it as quickly as they can. Switch positions after a while.


  • Return with one touch, then two touches,
  • Receive with outside of the foot, inside of the foot, left foot only...
  • Receive balls out of the air.
  • Receive, do a dribbling move then return.
  • Receive, turn and find a different target
  • Coaching Points

  • Quality of first touch. Keep it outside your "footprints" so that it can be returned quickly.
  • Receive "sideways on" when shielding from an opponent,
  • Prepare surface as soon as possible.
  • Be first to the ball, get into the line of flight of the ball.
  • Check away, then back to the ball.
  • Make "eye contact" with the server.
  • Changes of speed and direction.
  • Teach turning moves when players need to get the ball back to a different server.
  • Do not run "across" the server, check back at an angle. This makes it easier to turn and look back over your shoulder.

  • Small Game 20 - 25 Minutes. Activity level: Medium progression to high. Space: Defined space "smaller". 3 - 5 players per group.

    Corner Passing Game

    The Game

    Players with the ball are put on the outside of the grid as shown. The other players pair up inside the grid and designate one person as the attacker and one as the defender (Attackers wear the same color). The attacking player must get free of their defender, receive a ball from any support player and play it back without losing possession.

    Coaching Points

  • Change of speed, change of direction.
  • Take defender away from the player you want to receive the ball from to create space for yourself.
  • Receive "sideways on: to create more time for yourself.
  • Make sure to rotate players.
  • Variations

    Team Game 30 Minutes plus. Activity level: High. Space: Defined for the game = larger space. 7 - 11 players per team.


    The Game

    Start with three teams of equal numbers. The space should be rectangular in shape. Team A starts as free target players on all sides of space. Teams B and C play a game of keepaway. Passes can be made to the A players (they must return the ball to the the passer's team). Count the number of consecutive passes. Ten equals one goal. After a specified time period, or a goal, rotate teams. Let the scoring team make the decision whether to become "targets" or stay in the grid.

    Coaching Points

  • Encourage good pace and accuracy of passes.
  • Pace should be fast enough so defenders can not intercept, and comfortable for the receiver to control.
  • Accuracy - Ball should be played to players feet.
  • Players need to make good decision on how to utilize targets to retain possession.
  • Variations

  • Targets can only one touch the ball.
  • Field players must have 1, 2 or 3 touches, depending on skill level.
  • Award a goal if player can make a wall pass with target players.
  • Bread & Butter

    The Game

    Three teams of 4 (A, B, C) and two keepers (X, Y). Team A attacks against keeper Y. If they score, they then quickly try to attack keeper X. At this time, team B leaves the field and takes the place of team C who were the supporting players on the endlines, supporting both teams. The supporting players support for both teams and can move along the end line. The are limited to one touch one the ball. Have an ample aupply of balls ready in each net.

    Coaching Points

  • After scoring a goal, attacking players look to play quickly before the other team has a chance to come on and get organized.
  • Try to play the ball to target players.
  • Attacking and defending principles of play.
  • Match Conditions

    The Game

    An even sided game with full goals that is played like a real game but not necessarily with an 11 v. 11 format. The coach then observes if the training has had any effect on the players ability to meet the demands of the game. Coaching points can still be made but the coach focuses comments on the theme of the practice. If the session was a technical session, the coach focuses on the players body and sees if it is meeting the demands of the game technically. If the session was tactical, the coach focuses on what the player is seeing, and focuses on whether or not the player is interpreting the visual clues correctly and making the correct decisions based on what is seen.

    Warm Down 5 - 10 Minutes. Activity level: Low ramping down. Space: General, No specific boundaries. 1 - 2 players per group.

    Keep Your Yard Clean

    The Game Create a 5 - 10 yard neutral area that no player can enter. Use a minimum of one ball per two players (for best results, use a ball for each player). On command, each team tries to keep it's side free of balls by kicking through the neutral zone to the opposite side. Play for a specific time limit.


  • Must use two touches.
  • Only use inside of foot.
  • Only use instep (laces) when kicking.
  • Must do an escape move, then kick.
  • Increase size of neutral zone for more advanced players.
  • Use fewer balls.

  • Practice List