A Comfort Zone Game Using Wide Areas

The following drill is from Wayne Harrison, founder of Soccer Awareness.

Game Objective: To Encourage Players to Use Width and Offer an Area to Play Without Pressure

comfort zone game
  1. If a player breaks wide into the outside channel on either side of the field and is in possession of the ball this player cannot be tackled. Defenders are not allowed into the channel.
  2. The players on the team in possession of the ball can run the ball into the channel or have it passed to them into the channel.
  3. This condition plants the seed in the mind of the players to immediately play with width when in possession. Numbers for this game can be 3 v 3 and upwards.
comfort zone game 2
  1. (E) and (F) can “shadow” the outside players.
  2. Only one player allowed in the channel on one side at any one time when the team is in possession of the ball.
  3. Players can only stay outside in the channel with the ball for a few seconds then must make their move inside either passing it in or dribbling it in or it becomes too false a set up.

Coaching Points:

  • Create space wide when in possession of the ball
  • Building play from the back
  • Using width to attack
comfort zone game 3
  1. Striker (6) makes a run outside into the channel to offer an option of a pass for (2). Defender (B) can only “shadow” this run. By allowing the striker (6) to receive wide in the channel and have no pressure it again encourages the team to use width in attack but this time in the attacking half.
  2. (3) is already in the channel on the other side and continues the forward run and is another option for a pass, as are the players inside the actual field of play.
  3. Who (2) passes to can depend on the reaction of the opponents and who is left free to receive a pass or (2) may just attack with the ball with a forward run or dribble. (2) decides to pass the ball wide into the path of the run of (6).

Comfort Zone Game Using Targets

  1. The letters team work the ball to their target. When a goal is scored this way, the ball possession is transferred to the other team and they must immediately break wide to offer options.
  2. Here the two defending strikers (E) AND (F) have broken wide also so there is space for (4) to receive in the middle. Encourage the play to be wide or through the middle depending on the positioning of the opponents.

Develop: The wide areas can be used to practice certain moves the players have been taught, especially at the younger ages where they need to be able to practice them without pressure. This allows for them playing in a game but also doing the move without pressure. For example a certain dribble can be practiced then the ball dribbled in or passed into play.