Attacking Combinations

SoccerSpecific

The following session was observed by SoccerSpecific staff as the Northern Ireland National prepared for their recent friendly game – this session was conducted 24 hours before the game as a final review of attacking patterns. The focus of the session was on getting the ball wide, getting crosses into the penalty area and finishing the chances created. Although each progression was repetitive the session was kept light with more emphasis on technical and tactical application as opposed to the physical demands of the session. The final game was 10 minutes in duration with the full session lasting for 60 minutes.

Activity #1:

Warm up

Set Up:

The keepers warmed up with the goalkeeper coach. The rest of the squad worked with the rest of the coaching staff. Part A – players in a group jogging around one half of the field. Part B – players on one half of the field with a number of balls.

Diagram A
Diagram A

Explanation:

Part A – players jogged around the field. They did various stretching exercies in the four corners. While jogging they did various movement exercises at the direction of the coach.

Part B – players passed and moved all over the field.

Coaching Points:

  • Part A – emphasis on proper warm-up and mechanics and the constant intake of fluids
  • Part B – emphasis on technique, quality passing and first touch. Speed of play increased throughout the warm up.

Activity #2:

Crossing Pattern One

Setup:

Team on half field. Set up by position and a 4-4-2 formation. Keeper in goal. Supply of balls on half way line.

Diagram B
Diagram B

Explanation:

CM1 plays the ball into F2 who checks back to receive the pass. F2 lays the ball back for CM2 to play diagonal into the corner for RM to run onto. RM crosses into the penalty area. F1 – near post and F2 – far post make runs into the penalty area and look to finish. RB makes a supporting run towards the penalty area looking for any lay offs or rebounds.

Coaching Points:

  • Quality of the passing
  • Quality of the movement – timing of the runs
  • Quality of the crossing
  • Quality of the finishing

Activity #3:

Crossing Pattern Two

Set Up:

Team on half field. Set up by position and a 4-4-2 formation. Keeper in goal. Supply of balls on half way line.

Diagram C
Diagram C

Explanation:

CM1 plays the ball into F2 who checks back to receive the pass. F2 lays the ball back for CM2 to play wide to the RM. RM plays the ball down the line for the RB overlapping and crosses into the penalty area. F1 – near post and F2 – far post make runs into the penalty area and look to finish. RB makes a supporting run towards the penalty area looking for any lay offs or rebounds. Repeat the activity on the left hand side with CM2, LM and LB involved in the build up.

Coaching Points:

  • Quality of the passing
  • Quality of the movement
  • Timing of the overlappin run
  • Quality of the crossing
  • Quality of the finishing

Activity #4:

Crossing Pattern Two

Set Up:

Team on half field. Set up by position and a 4-4-2 formation. Keeper in goal. Supply of balls on half way line.

Diagram D
Diagram D

Explanation:

CM1 plays the ball into F2 who checks back to receive the pass. F2 lays the ball back for CM2 to play diagonal into the corner for RM to run onto. RM controls and lays back for RB in support. The RB plays a deep cross into the penalty area. F1 – near post and F2 – far post make runs into the penalty area and look to finish. Repeat the activity on the left hand side with CM2, LM and LB involved in the build up.

Coaching Points:

  • Quality of the passing
  • Quality of the movement – timing of the runs
  • Quality of the support
  • Quality of the crossing
  • Quality of the finishing

Activity #5:

Game

Setup:

Full field, two teams play 11v11. Starting line up versus the squad players.

Diagram E
Diagram E

Explanation:

Unrestricted game with full rules and coaching staff members acting as officials.

Coaching Points:

  • Focus on getting the ball wide
  • Get balls played into the penalty area as early and as often as possibleTiming of forward runs
  • Finishing