Rondo Positional Play: The blue team inside the grid is competing against the red team inside the grid (4v4). The players outside the grid can only be used by the players inside the grid that are on their team (blue can use blue and red can only use red). Each team designates one player inside the grid that plays as the center back and can not move from the “defensive zone” – in front of the two yellow cone goals and marked by white line. The center back operates as the swing man and support player of the three midfielders when in possession. When defending any of the inside players can retreat inside the defensive zone to help the center back defend the two yellow goals. The game should be played 2-touch at first and then eventually 1-touch once the tempo and rhythm is good. Another variation is make outside players 1-touch and inside players 2-touch.
This exercise works on the 3 center midfielders and 1 center back with combination play in tight areas; it is realistic to an actual game situation. Point out all the diamonds and triangles that can be made in the exercise in regards to passing support angles – involve the outside players as well in the triangles and diamonds. The exercise can be related directly to “rondo” training if that is something you do with your team. The ball should go “pum,pum,pum” all over the place and end up with a scoring opportunity. On the defensive end the 4 players must work hard together to recover the ball.