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Soccer Equipment

Coach Developing Play from the Back

Session to train the outside flank players on their responsibilities in the attacking phase.  Develop attacking patterns using the outside flank players.  Progressions to include the holding and central midfield players make this into a full coaching session on developing play out the back.
  • Drill No:               AFD3
  • Age:                    14-Adult                             
  • No Players:        10+
  • Difficulty:            Medium/Hard
  • Area/Time:         1/2 Field  (25mins)
Diagram 1

Use 1/2 of a full size pitch. Mark out a no play zone where the players do not play to allow play to be compacted to one side of the field.

  • 4 attackers (Yellow)
  • 3 defenders (Red)
  • 1 goalkeeper  (Green)

In the example above the white attacking team combines with each other using the flank player to create opportunities to work the ball up the field and score in the gate goals . Switch the roles of attacking and defending after 10 minutes. The restart positions can be varied.  The coach works with the attacking team (playing out the back) to identify the key points of developing play out from the back.  In the above example the starting position is the centre spot:

  1. One of the defending players hit a long (mishit) pass into the GK. This pass should be shadowed back by A1, A2 and A3 until safely in the GK’s hands. The GK then distributes to A1 (full-back).
  2. A1 peels out wide. Then asks for and receives a throw or feet distribution from the GK.
  3. Centre back (A3) drops off to form a ‘half moon’ curved shape at the back.
  4. Centre back (A2) drops off to form a ‘half moon’ curved shape at the back.
  5. Midfielder (A4) checks and moves to find space to receive a pass to help support the attack.

Place restrictions on the starting positions of the defenders if they encroach the team playing out from the back too quickly. I.e. start behind the yellow coned starting position, etc.

    2 teams compete and attempt to score.  The defending team scores by scoring on the goal.  The attacking team scores by playing the ball through the gate goals.  The defending team has only 7 touches to score.  The touch restriction can be removed if necessary.

    1. Ensure that the outside full back goes wide immediately once the GK has the ball safely under control and with an open body position.
    2. Defenders should shadow the ball all the way back to the GK from the start point long ball.
    3. Transition from defense to attack should be fast and positive.
    4. Discuss a possible early cross (near post or far post?).
    5. Movement ahead of the ball to support the back players.
    6. Discuss the possible passing triangles as shown in Diagram 2.
    7. GK should be proactive throughout. Verbal and stepping up with the play to act as a sweeper as play develops down the field.
    Diagram 2
    1. 6vs4 (+GK). The 6 players attempt to combine to beat the 4 defenders and score in the gates goals with a full width field now.
    2. Vary the starting positions (i.e. SP1, SP2, SP3) as shown the Diagram 2, simulating early crosses from both sides.
      1. Play 6vs5. Increasing the difficulty level for the team developing the play.
      Encourage quick transition. Discuss the technique and positioning of the throw for the GK (i.e. spear throw, underarm, over arm, feet). Developing play team must expand to create space to play out from the back. Outside flanks should step forward into attacking positions.
      Diagrams were generated using EasyGraphics.