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Coaching Soccer Blog


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Arsenal FC – 5v5+3 : www.soccersmarttraining.com

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5v5+3 Square Possession

Grid: Three equal sized grids of 15×15 (total 45x15yards)

Players: 13

Instructions & Key Points: This possession game is challenging and fun for the players. The goal is for a team to complete 5 passes in square #1 then pass the ball into square #2 as players break into square #2 (the ball must cross into square #2 before the players) – the team in possession will try and complete 5 more passes in square #2 and than finally play into square #3 to complete the final 5 passes. If a team successfully completes 5 passes in each square without losing possession they receive a point. If play is in square #1 and the blue team loses possession the game does will not stop; the red team will try and put together 5 passes and move to the 2nd square. If a team loses possession in square #2 the game will restart in square #1 with the opposite team starting with possession. The 3 white players always play on the team in possession at all times. They will move with the play from square to square (1 inside & 2 outside). Variations: make neutral white players 1-touch only, 2-touch or 1-touch only for every player, adjust the number of passes that need to be made before entering the next square, if a team scores they will try and work the ball back the other direction through all 3 squares for double the points!

Be sure to check out my online coaching courses at http://www.soccersmarttraining.com


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Train Like Arsenal. Play Like Arsenal. “Coming out May 1st on Amazon.com”……. www.soccersmarttraining.com

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This 5v2 game requires quick passing, fast thinking and proper positioning in order to keep possession.  The grid is two 20×10 yards split into 2 separate 10×10 yard grids.  The blue team sends 2 defenders as the red team keeps possession with a 2-touch limit per/player.  As the players skill level increases make the game 1-touch only.  The coach should count  the number of passes made.  The team who connects the most passes in one possession is the winner – play 10 possessions per/team – rotating every possession.  Feel free to vary the rules and customize the grid size to fit the skill level.  This exercise is one of 15+ that is in my book “Train Like Arsenal. Play Like Arsenal.”


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8 Keys To Unlocking Your Child’s Potential & Development In Sports & Beyond: “There Is A Formula For Success.”

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Over the years the number one question I get from the parents of young players is “how can my child improve in the sport”? It is certainly a good question, but it is usually asked when I am walking off the field after training or a game. The reality is for me to answer that question in detail, it could take hours. I decided to write this guidebook in order to help educate parents who really want their child to improve and excel in sports and beyond. Over the past fifteen years there has been a lot of research into how certain people are able to become experts and highly skilled in their particular fields. That research clearly shows there is a formula for success that can be applied to any area in which a person wishes to become skilled. The trick is constructing an age appropriate formula that is fun and uses the most effective coaching & teaching methods. In this book I give you the framework of what it will take in order for your child to become highly skilled and accomplished in the area they choose. The book is also intended to educate parents about what a healthy sports development plan should look like for their child. Parents must be willing to take an active and educated role in their child’s development. If you are serious about your child being able to excel and reach their potential, while keeping a healthy balanced lifestyle – this book is for you!

Click Here To View The Book – No soccer parent or coach should be without this information


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Possession & Combination Scoring : www.soccersmarttraining.com

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This possession game not only gets the ball moving quickly, it encourages quick combination play to score goals.  In order to score the player in possession must play a pass through a set of triangle cones and receive a 1-touch pass back through the cones in order to score.  In this example you can see the player in yellow and black passes the ball through the center triangle cones and gets a 1-time pass back through the cones for a point.  The team will circulate the ball quickly looking to attack any triangle cone set-up that is left open.  Feel free to play 4v4+1, 5v5, 6v6 etc.  I recommend starting with a 2 touch and 1-touch scoring.  Players will enjoy this exercise as it gets competitive quickly.


11 v 11 With Conditions: www.soccersmarttraining.com

This is a simple way to play 11v11 and naturally get players to work the ball switching the field and using the width.  It also encourages to be aware, scan the field and think ahead.  The game can be set up a few different ways depending on the work load & intensity level you want for the day. The game is 5v5, half field with 1 player who is the neutral or + player and always plays for the team in possession of the ball.  The only condition to the game is as follows: The team working the ball out of their half must play the ball into both wide channels before they can pass forward to the other half of the field to their other 5 team members who must get the ball wide into both channels before scoring a goal.  If the defending team intercepts they must get the ball wide in both channels before sending it to the other half to their attackers.  The game is fun and it naturally makes play more organized, efficient and productive.  There is no room for a lapse of concentration in this training.  If the players are in good shape, they can play 11v11 with every player going where they are supposed to on the field.

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