TUESDAY EASTER CAMP

WARM UP - 9:15am - 9:25am - SAQ

BALL MASTERY - 9:30am - 9:55am - DRIBBLING & RUNNING WITH THE BALL (2 PRACTICES)

COACHES - SET UP BOTH PRACTICES AND MOVE TO PRACTICE 2 AFTER 12 MINS (REFER TO STAR COACHES INTERVENTION POINTERS)

PRACTICE 1 - DRIBBLING & AWARNESS

Overview:

Set out a square of 30 x 30 yards with a 10 x 10 yards square in the middle with small gates scattered inside the larger area. Every player has ball and starts by dribbling through the gates as a warm up getting used to the ball. To progress players now must dribble through the middle square after going through each gate. Players can be challenged to how many they can go through in one minute. The next stage is to go towards a gate and then turn away using different moves. To make it more competitive and challenging place a tagger in the middle square with a football. If players are tagged they lose a point. Add another tagger in the middle square and taggers in the larger area too.

Coaching Points:

Dribbling Technique: Keeping the ball close to the body using both feet throughout will help players manipulate the ball and keep it under control. Using different parts of the feet will also allow players to change direction and the position of the ball whilst keeping their head/eyes up. Players should use a variety of turns experimenting different ways of changing direction with turns like the inside, outside cut, cruyff turn & stepover for example.

Decision Making: Where is the space to dribble, can i dribble through that gate or is someone already there? Is there enough space to move through the middle square without being tagged? These are all key decisions that will need to be made within this practise.

Awareness: Players must dribble with their head/eyes up always scanning for the space to move into or avoiding potential collisions with other players. Being aware of the positioning of taggers too is important recognising if they are trying to tag someone else allowing space to drive through.

Speed: With challenges in place, players need to dribble with the ball as fast as possible while keeping it under control to change direction easily. When they turn away from a gate, acceleration is needed to replicate match movements of getting away from a defender.

Progressions:

  • Dribble through a gate & then through the middle square- How many in one minute?
  • Turn away from gates & dribble through the middle square.

PRACTICE 2 - BALL MANIPULATION & AWARNESS

Overview:

Two groups of players split evenly working in different directions with different purposes. The idea of this setup is to create chaos and confusion amongst players so they concentrate on the actions they are required to perform. With two groups working it means players have to be aware of their surroundings and make the correct decisions quickly while carrying out the technical actions. To start one group dribbles across in both directions with the other group dribbling forwards and then passing back to the next player.

Coaching Points:

Ball Control: Throughout this practise players need to keep the ball close to their feet allowing them to remain in full control of the ball at all times. Once the ball becomes out of control it could lead to the whole practise breaking down by bumping into another players ball. Players receiving a pass need to keep their first touch tight and close by with other players running across them.

Awareness: The most important point in this setup is to be aware of other players and footballs to enable change of direction, slowing down or speeding up. Players must keep their head/ eyes up constantly scanning for space & potential obstacles in their path.

Quality of Pass: To keep the balls in the area and continuously moving all the time, the passes need to be directed onto the receivers foot at a good weight allowing the first touch to remain in close proximity. A pass too hard may make the ball bounce too far and collide into other balls or players dribbling across.

Decision Making: The decision to dribble quickly or slowly depending on the amount of space available will be a common one, is it safe to pass the ball across the square? Identifying space and player positioning will help these decisions be good ones which will in return allow all balls to within the area.

Progressions:

  • Dribbling players move in a diagonal direction.
  • Both groups move in a diagonal direction.
  • One group dribble diagonal, one group pass back and forth following their pass.

FREE PLAY - 10:00am - 10:30am 

BREAK - 10:30am - 10:45am 

TECHNICAL CAROUSEL - 10:45am - 11:45am 

PRACTICE 1 - 1v1 MULTI-GOALS (MATT H) 

Overview:

Setup four goals with a small area around each of the goals. Players have to try and score by getting into the area of any of the four goals. If the attacker scores, they keep possession and restart by bringing the ball into play from the goal but cannot score in that same goal. The defenders have to try and win the ball back and score in one of the four goals. Make the games competitive and add a time limit to each of the games. i.e. the first player to score five goals wins or play a 5 minute game etc.

Coaching Points:

Manipulation: Players should look at using different surfaces of their feet to help them to manipulate the ball to attack each of the four goals. Ball manipulation should also be used to help them evade their opponent and get out of tight areas as well.

1 v 1’s: Players should be encouraged to be creative and willing to take risks to take players on in this game to create opportunities for them to score in any of the four goals. Due to the game being multi – directional, encourage players to keep their eyes up and identify which goal / direction is the best one to move towards.

Eyes Up: As players travel with the ball, they should look to do this with their eyes up helping them to recognize the best space for them to move into as well as ensuring they avoid traffic and other players. Players should adjust the surface and type of touches they are taking by keeping their eyes up and recognizing the best way of moving with the ball.

Shooting: Players should be encouraged to shoot with both feet. If players aren’t prepared to do this, it may affect their opportunities to score as they will slow down to get it onto their preferred foot.

Progressions:

  • Increase the number of players per ball i.e. 2v2, 3v3 etc.

PRACTICE 2 - PASSING & RECEIVING AWARENESS (LUKE)

Overview:

Divide the group into 3 teams of 4 (adapt to the numbers of your group) & bib them up into different colours. The area of 20 x 20 yards is divided into 5 x 5 squares using flat markers. Each group has a ball between them and pass to each other as warm up. The first part is a challenge to the players – Can your first touch be into an empty square? This acts as an activation for the possession exercise where 2 teams keep possession of their own ball against a pressing team. If the pressing team win the ball, then the team that loses the ball become the defending team. The adaptation to this is to take out one ball out and 2 teams keep possession against 1 team.

Coaching Points:

Awareness & Decision Making: To take the first touch into an empty square requires the knowledge that it is free. This is done by players always scanning the area around them to see where the empty squares are and which direction the touch needs to be. This will help them decide their body shape to receive and where their first touch needs to go (in front, left, right or behind). When in possession, players will need to be checking shoulders before receiving to select their next pass or action.

First Touch: With good awareness and decision making, the first touch will become easier by adopting the correct body shape to go in the desired direction. The player should select an appropriate surface of the foot to make good contact and push the touch into an empty square.

Creating Angles: In all parts of this exercise, players should be creating angles for the player on the ball giving them plenty of options to keep possession. The angle created will allow a good first touch or the ability to bounce the ball back or to a team mate one touch. Players should identify empty squares where they could take their first touch and position themselves nearby if possible.

Weight & Quality of Pass: Retaining possession always relies on the quality of passing, the direction of the pass either safe side or onto the back foot to turn out. The weight is also important to keep the flow of the sequence enabling the receiver to control the ball and pass off the second touch or dribble into space. Passes where players have to stretch or take an extra touch to control the ball invite pressure from the opponents.

Progressions:

  • 2 teams keep possession of their own ball against 1 pressing team.

PRACTICE 3 - 3v3 TO GOALS (JUDE)

Overview:

Set up a 25 x 25 area and split the pitch into three equal channels as well as a halfway line. On the halfway line there should be several footballs which the attackers will look to use to begin the attack. Have two defenders and a goalkeeper by either goal, as well as three attackers in each half. The attacking team must try and score in their goal, if the defenders win the ball they must stop the ball on the halfway line. After each goal is scored, or the ball has gone out of play the attackers must return to the halfway line to get a new ball to begin a new attack. Rotate the attackers and defenders after a set time limit / number of goals or turns.

Coaching Points:

Eyes Up: The attacker should keep their eyes up when beginning the game when playing out from the halfway line to be able to see the whole pitch. In addition, when players are on the ball by keeping their eyes up it will help them to make the right decision as they will be able to see the space, defenders as well as their team mates as well (recognise where the overload is).

Speed of Attack: As soon as a ball goes out of play or a goal is scored, attackers should begin the next attack quickly to help them to exploit any spaces left by the defending team. If the defending team are compact, attackers may need to be more patient in possession to wait for the right time to attack.

Timing of Run: If the ball is played out wide the attackers should look to hold their run to get into the box at the right time which may lead to finishes from wide areas. Also, players may look to run in advance of the ball to try and break lines by receiving through passes or passes over the top of the defence as well.

Finishing Technique: As players are aiming to travel with the ball at speed, they should look at finesse finishing and attempting to place the ball in the corners of the goal. If they are forced wide, they may require attackers to finish across goal into the far post or cutting inside to curl the with a finesse finish as well. If the ball is central, the attackers may use their laces or toes to finish to allow them to get their shot of quickly without the defender and goalkeeper being able to adapt to the attacker’s body shape. Attackers should also be ready to rebound on any saves or blocks.

PRACTICE 4 - RUBIX CUBE GAME (JAMES)

Overview:

Two teams set up in a line facing three lines of different coloured cones 10 yards away lined up in front of them with a cube shape. After given a new combination each team will race to create that combination before the other team reaches the same objective.  

Coaching Points: 

Teamwork: This is a team game and under fatigue, it’s important that we make every run count towards our objective. Communication will be key and sharing information during the exercise.  

Decision Making: When arriving you will only get one chance to move two cones vertically or horizontally which have to be next to each other. This isn’t easy under pressure and fatigue so take your time. 

Speed: Pure acceleration and maximum pace with and without the ball will be essential to gain an advantage on the opposition and also give you more time to make your decisions.   

Ball Control: When taking the ball, your speed and quality will be required, coordinating the speed of your body and the ball quickly to finish before the other team. 

Progressions:  

  • Add variations with the ball.

PRACTICE 5 - FINISHING UNDER PRESSURE (JACOB)

Overview:

Setup an area with a goal and a goalkeeper. Organise two teams that are based outside the area with the defender setting up on a blue cone and the attacker setting up on a red cone. On the attackers first touch, the defender must run around the red cone and recover to apply pressure onto the attacker, whilst the attacker must try and score in the goal. If the defender wins the ball back, they have to simply return the back to the half way (their cone). Rotate regularly both the attackers and defenders.

Coaching Points:

Technique: Attackers should look to use running with the ball and larger touches to help them to move into space as they approach the goal to evade the recovering defender. If the defender can recover, they should look to use their body to help them to stay on the ball and protect the ball from the recovering defender.

Speed of Attack: Attackers should look to attack at speed with as few touches as possible. The faster players are able to attack, the more likely they will be able to get in a goalscoring position whilst evading the defender.

1v1s: Attackers will need to use 1 v 1 moves to help them to beat both the goalkeeper potentially as well as the recovering defender. Attackers may need to use changes of direction whilst they’re attacking as well. Changes of direction will help players to drag defenders out shape which will give attackers the opportunity to exploit space left.

Execution of Finish: Encourage players to be calm in front of goal and look to finish across goal when in a wide area or use creative, clever finishes to beat the goalkeeper. Encourage attackers to try and hit the target and use either power or finesse to score.

Progressions:

  • Add a score line or a limit of the amount of touches the attackers are allowed. You can also adjust the distance between the attacker and defenders’ cones too.
  •  Move to a 2 v 2 scenario.

2 x 15 MINS CONDITION GAMES - 11:50pm - 12:20pm 

PRACTICE 1 - PRESSING POINTS GAME (JUDE, JACOB & LUKE)

Overview:

Setup a small sided pitch with 1 goal at either end with a goalkeeper in each of the goals. Play a 6v6/8v8 game with normal rules apart from the restarts all being passed in (no throw ins or corners). The pitch is setup into thirds every 20 yards. If the defenders score, it’s worth will vary from where they won the ball back i.e. the top third is worth 3, middle third is 2 and bottom third is 1. If a team score, they restart the game with a ball from their goal line which must be passed. This game is the same as the previous practice but with a larger pitch and more players.

Coaching Points:

Communication: Throughout this game as this pitch has increased in size and there are now more players in either team, players will need to communicate with one another to help them to decide upon when they will press or drop. Players will also need to communicate with one another on how / where they will show the opposition too i.e. force them back, outside or inside etc. 

Pressing/Movement: Each team should look to press when in balance to try and win the ball back as high up the pitch as possible. You may support teams with having a trigger or a trap set where they look to press the ball once the opponents move into a particular area of the pitch.  If the team is out of balance, encourage players to win the ball back quickly themselves or to recover back into their shape and behind the ball. You may encourage defenders to try and win the ball back in 5 seconds as an example. 

1v1 Defending: In 1v1 defending situations, players should look to move aggressively to press the ball wherever possible and angle their run to force the attack the direction that they wish to show them. As they approach, players should look to get side on and on the outside of the ball to force them one way and then look to use their body to help them win the ball and come away with it. If player cannot press, they may need to recover back into their shape or be patient and wait for the right time.

Regains: Once the defenders have won the ball back from the opposition, they should look to secure possession of the ball individually or collectively as a team. Players will need to decide on whether they need to build or counter attack once they’ve won the ball back. Encourage players to come away with the ball in their duels to help them to start an attack once they’ve won it.

PRACTICE 2 - MULTI BALLS (MATT H, JAMES & LUKE)

Overview:

Setup a small sided game with two goals and organise two teams with a goalkeeper in either goal. Make the game directional. Line footballs up around the outside of the pitch and the game starts by a player collecting the ball on the outside and then attacking their goal. Once a ball goes out of play or a goal is scored, the team who would normally get possession collect a ball from anywhere and attack. Play until all footballs have been used and then restart the game by placing the footballs back around the outside of the pitch.

Coaching Points:

Movement/Creating Space: As the attacking team brings the ball into play from the outside of the pitch, the team should look to create both width and depth to help them to be able to be in a position to retain possession of the ball as well as exploit spaces left by the opposition.

Combination Play: Quick, short sharp combinations will help players to enter the pitch with their ball and create goalscoring opportunities for them and their team. Encourage players to use combinations between them, but also to move to create overloads where they can use these combinations to exploit space/eliminate defenders.

Awareness/Decision Making: Players in this game should be continually looking to scan what’s around them to help them to identify spaces that they can exploit. If a team restarts with their ball, they should look to choose a ball which is going to help them to retain but also create a goalscoring opportunity too.

Finishing: The area of the pitch will change the types of finishes that players need. Players may be able to get shots away from crosses, outside of the box as well as inside of the box too. Encourage players to get shots away on both feet to ensure they don’t lose opportunities to shoot and give the defenders time to block shots.

LUNCH BREAK - 12:20pm - 12:50pm 

SKILLS GAMES - 12:50pm - 1:20pm

PRE-ACADEMY GROUPS (JAMES, JUDE & JACOB)

  • PRACTICE 1 - HIT THE BACK OF THE NET
  • PRACTICE 2 - TEAM TARGET SHOOTING GAME (20 BALLS)
  • PRACTICE 3 - INDIVIDUAL TARGET SHOOTING GAME (NUMBERS)

ACADEMY GROUPS (MATT H & LUKE)

PRACTICE 1 - FOOTBALL TENNIS - TEAM MATCHES

PRACTICE 2 - INDIVIDUAL TARGET SHOOTING GAME (NUMBERS)

TOURNAMENT - 1:25pm - 2:45pm 

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