Golden Zone

SoccerSpecific

The “golden zone” is referred to by analysts to be the area where the majority of goals are scored in the professional game. Specifically, it is the area inside the penalty box within the width of the 6 yard box in front of goal. This Golden Zone session focuses on a teams ability to create space in and around the center of the penalty box to create and score opportunities. This session focuses on the ability to use mobility, creativity, support and penetration to improve sharpness around the box and improve the team’s quality around the box.

If you’re looking for activities and sessions with social distancing incorporated, please take a look at our Learning Library!  For current guidelines in the U.S., please visit CDC.gov.


Golden Zone

1.

Setup:

Golden zone Finishing 1- four mannequins set up as center backs and outside backs outside the box. 2 cones set up 12 yards away from the 2 central mannequins and the 2 wide mannequins (at a slight angle). A good amount of balls.

Golden Zone 1 | SoccerSpecific.com

Instructions:

Balls start from A and B.

1. Player at Cone A plays a diagonal pass for the striker to turn and shoot.
2. Player at Cone B then plays a diagonal pass for the striker to turn and shoot.
3. Player at Cone A now plays diagonally wide to the winger who plays a combination with the player at the cone in behind the mannequin for a cross for the 2 attackers.
4. Same on the opposite side.

Play wide for cross and shot on goal.

Coaching Points:

  • First touch to set for a finish.
  • Type of finishing- instep, inside of the foot, chip goalkeeper.
  • Crossing quality- type of cross into the penalty box.

2.

Setup:

Golden zone Finishing 1- four mannequins set up as center backs and outside backs outside the box. 2 cones set up 12 yards away from the 2 central mannequins and the 2 wide mannequins (at a slight angle). A good amount of balls.

Golden Zone 2 | SoccerSpecific.com

Instructions:

Balls start from A and B.

1. Player at Cone A plays a diagonal pass for the striker to turn and shoot.
2. Player at Cone B then plays a diagonal pass for the striker to turn and shoot.
3. Player at Cone A now plays diagonally wide to the winger who plays a combination with the player at the cone in behind the mannequin for a cross for the 2 attackers.
4. Same on the opposite side.

Play wide for cross and shot on goal.

Coaching Points:

  • First touch to set for a finish.
  • Type of finishing- instep, inside of the foot, chip goalkeeper.
  • Crossing quality- type of cross into the penalty box.

3.

Setup:

Team set up as above (black vs red). Players set up centrally (2 v 2), wide on the right (2 v 1) and wide on the left (2 v 1). 2 central players always start the play off. 4 mins attacking, then switch roles. 2 sets for each team.

Golden Zone 3 | SoccerSpecific.com

Instructions:

Balls start centrally with the 2 players playing square passes;

1. Central players play to one of the two striker and then one joins to create a 3 v 2.
2. Central players now find the wide player on the right side (2). Player receives to create a 2 v 1 against the defender to cross or enter the box to create a 3 v 2 with the 2 strikers.
3. Same as before, on the left side.

If defenders win the ball, they counter to the 2 mini wide goals. Players then rotate to new positions (defenders and attackers).

Coaching Points:

  • Ability to create separation to set for a finish.
  • Combination play in and around the box
  • Type of finishing- instep, inside of the foot, chip goalkeeper.
  • Crossing quality- type of cross into the penalty box.

4.

Setup:

Team set up as above (black vs red). Players set up centrally (2 v 2), wide on the right (2 v 1) and wide on the left (2 v 1). 2 central players always start the play off. 4 mins attacking, then switch roles. 2 sets for each team.

Golden Zone 4 | SoccerSpecific.com

Instructions:

Balls start centrally with the 2 players playing square passes;

1. Central players play to one of the two striker and then one joins to create a 3 v 2.
2. Central players now find the wide player on the right side (2). Player receives to create a 2 v 1 against the defender to cross or enter the box to create a 3 v 2 with the 2 strikers.
3. Same as before, on the left side.

Players then rotate to new positions (defenders and attackers).

Coaching Points:

  • Ability to create separation to set for a finish.
  • Combination play in and around the box
  • Type of finishing- instep, inside of the foot, chip goalkeeper.
  • Crossing quality- type of cross into the penalty box.

5.

Setup:

Gold zone Small sided game. 40 x 30 field with 2 big goals. 5 v 5 + 2 (two neutrals on the outside). 5 v 5 players in the playing area. Goalkeepers start with balls each possession. Field split in half with a 3 v 2 in each half; one ball enters final third, anyone can move as they wish. 5 min games.

Golden Zone 5 | SoccerSpecific.com

Instructions:

Goalkeepers start with balls and play to their team. Team in possession attempt to score in the big goal, with outside neutral players who can come inside to create 2 v 1’s in the playing area. Once the play is over, the neutral player must return to the outside.

Progression: 2 touches allowed by all players.

Progression 2: Must play into strikers feet before scoring.

Coaching Points:

  • Creating and exploiting 2 v 1’s- neutral players are encouraged to receive and drive inside towards a defender to create space for a 2 v 1 situation.
  • Speed of play- fast ball progression is essential to move the opposition and create space in attacking areas.
  • Creativity and improvisation- individual skill and improvisation should be encouraged throughout. Be your own genius!
  • Ability to create openings for shots on goal are key- movement, body position, first touch and execution of passes are all essential to create goalscoring opportunities.