Creating Space For Others (Passing and Support Play Game)

The following session comes from Kurtis Pottinger. Kurtis is the Director of Coaching at coaching company Lets Play The Game Ltd.

The main focus for this game is to encourage the movement of your players off the ball. The players are also looking for opportunities to play the ball through the triangle to score points. The defender must defend the triangle and do their best not to go through the area.

The Session Layout

Set up a 15 x 15 area with a triangle in the middle (about 4-5 yards apart for the triangle and I tend to use flat markers for gates within an area). The session above has 5 players in a 4v1 situation (four attackers and 1 defender).

How To Play

The four attackers try to keep possession of the ball while looking for opportunities to play through the triangle. Each time the attackers play the ball through the triangle to another teammate they get a goal. The ball must reach another teammate for it to count as a goal.

The defender must defend the triangle and not go inside to stop the ball. They must work around the triangle trying to stop the attackers from making a penetrative pass.

The coach should encourage the attackers to ‘think ahead’ and not to only make a decision when they have the ball which happens often with young players. Players need to ‘think before’ they receive the ball and decide what their next move will be i.e where is space, where is the defender, can I turn and dribble or do I need to shield the ball etc.

On every pass, the players without the ball should be moving to assist the person with the ball to create better opportunities to keep possession and score goals.

Make sure the defender is rotated every 1-2 minutes so that everyone has an opportunity to defend.

Progression: Make it a 4v2 which will make it harder for the players to score goals.

Coaching Points

  1. Provide quick support angles to receive the ball in space.
  2. Create space for others by moving the defender with your movement.
  3. Can you play passes to others that are soft enough to control and make appropriate decisions for the player receiving the ball?
  4. Take soft directional touches into space away from the defender with your first touch.
  5. Keep the ball.