Free Soccer Drills

Skill Practice


Defend The Defending Third | Skill Practice (03-P3)

Set Up
13 Outfield Players inc. 2 GKs, a central 152 area, 2 v 2 + Floater, 1 ST v 1 DF each end + 1 WM Floater either side to deliver. Here we are defending the goal from wide deliveries starting with 2 v 1 situations, gradually building numbers to develop individual and paired defending in the final third. Individual defending, reading of delivery, marking and positional sense off ball delivery. Central players must make 5 passes before delivering to wide player who puts a cross in the box. Teammate in area (not passer) makes 2 v 1 by attacking area. If they regain in area, they can break immediately to create same 2 v 1.


Key Coaching Points
  • Assess flight of the ball quickly to be able to defend effectively.
  • Be in a position to see both ball delivery and attacking player - Quick feet


Progressions & Constraints
Allow ball directly into ST feet so defender can deal with direct play.
Key Coaching Questions
  • Are you able to intercept or cause problems on player's first touch?
  • How can you read a player's turn? Body shape, stronger foot.. Can you dictate this?


Player Focus
Individual Defending | 1 v 1 Technique | Reading Flight | Quick feet | Physical Use