Setup a square with a player with a ball each inside the area. Organise a larger square to be based around the outside of the middle square with large cones. In this game, players must travel with the ball around the middle square. When the coach blows their whistle, the players must take their ball and dribble around one of the outside cones before returning into the square. The first player to do so, wins!

Coaching Points:

Dribbling: Players should try to use different surfaces of both feet as they travel through the box in the middle. Once players hear the coaches whistle, they may look to take larger touches to get them around one of the outside cones and back as quickly as they can.

Awareness: As players travel around the middle box, they should look to keep their eyes up and look for spaces to dribble into. Players should also look to keep scanning throughout the game to help them to see which cones they will travel around. Players will also need to adjust how they travel with the ball if other players move in their way.

Speed: Players when dribbling the ball should look to take quick, short sharp touches as they travel around the area using both feet. As soon as coaches hear the whistle, players should look to react quickly and try to move around one of the outside cones as fast as they can. To help them with this, they may look to take larger touches when travelling with the ball to get it out of their feet.

Warm Up: As players will get lots of touches of the ball, they will be also increasing their heart rate and body temperature. If players are cold or less active, the whistle from the coach can increase intensity of the practice.


  • Players must get around two cones.


  • Players leave their football in the box, and must get around a cone and return to their ball.



Setup a pitch with two goals and a goalkeeper in either goal. With flat markers, mark out the pitch into a diamond. In this game, players have to hold the ball in a corner for them to be able to score. The length of time they hold the ball in a corner before scoring equals the number of goals they get. If the team loses possession whilst trying to hold the ball in one of the corners, they lose that time / number of potential points when they score. This game can be played either directional or multi-directionally.

Coaching Points:

Eyes Up/Scanning: Players should keep their eyes up and continually scan to see where the defender is to help them to recognise how they will ‘hide’ the ball away from the defender to help them protect the ball. This will be particularly important when players are inside one of the corners.

Change of Direction: Quick changes of direction will enable players to turn away from pressure and the defender. The use of multiple changes of directions will help players twist and turn away from the opponent to help them keep the ball and leave it from one of the four corners.

Ball Manipulation: Players should explore using different surfaces of their feet to manipulate their ball to evade pressure from the defender. Using different parts of the feet will help them to protect and move into spaces away from the defender.

Shielding: Players that use their arms and body to protect the ball will help build a ‘shield’ to keep the ball away from the defender. Shielding the ball is a great way for players to protect the ball and also start understanding how they can use their body to turn away from pressure whilst ‘hiding it’.


  • Play the game with two footballs at one time, increasing the number of opportunities have to shield and protect the ball in one of the four corners.


  • Players can also score normal goals, as well as goals from shielding the ball in one of the four corners.