Sideways-on: Check the Shoulder

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Two of the most valuable techniques you can teach your young players are to receive the ball sideways-on facing the playing field and get them to check their shoulders at least once before they receive the ball. Work the non-dominant side: through the repetitions in these passing variations, challenge them to receive the ball with their weaker foot and make sure they are checking both shoulders at least once before receiving the ball.

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1.

Setup:

Set up as shown, at least 12 players per grid and plenty of balls.

Diagram A
Diagram A

Instructions:

Follow the passing sequence as shown for 3 minutes. Players advance one cone for the rotation.

Coaching Points:

The main focus for the first three minute pattern is a quick change of pace pulling away from the cone and getting your feet and hips set and open to the playing field.

2.

Setup:

Set up as shown, at least 12 players per grid and plenty of balls.

Diagram B
Diagram B

Instructions:

Follow the passing sequence as shown for 3 minutes. Players advance one cone for the rotation.

Coaching Points:

The main focus for the second three minutes of the pattern is checking each shoulder at least once before they receive the ball. Make sure they work on looking over the shoulder they less comfortable with.

3.

Setup:

Set up as shown, at least 12 players per grid and plenty of balls.

Diagram C
Diagram C

Instructions:

Follow the passing sequence as shown for 3 minutes. Players advance one cone for the rotation.

Coaching Points:

The main focus for the third three minute pattern is concentrating on receiving the ball sideways on with the non dominant foot. Make sure they are preparing their hips and moving their feet so they receiving the ball side ways on facing the field.

4.

Setup:

Set up as shown, at least 12 players per grid and plenty of balls.

Diagram D
Diagram D

Instructions:

Follow the passing sequence as shown for 3 minutes. Players advance one cone for the rotation.

Coaching Points:

The main focus of the last three minute pattern is demanding the ball at the appropriate time based on the development of the play.