Ball Control Soccer Drills

soccer drills go a long way in match situations
Photo by Jeffrey F Lin

When we watch soccer on television, our mind rarely wanders from the way star players are able to create magic with their feet. The way the player dribbles the soccer ball towards his goal, away from his opponents is something spectacular. Another place where our eyes are fixated upon is the soccer scores. In those tense moments at the end of a classic soccer game, or a nail-biting finish, the movement of the last few seconds will be etched in our memories and so do the soccer scores.

However, the game is not as simple as it is beautiful. To be an elite soccer player requires tremendous hard work in addition to having a bit of luck and supreme physical fitness.

Soccer is a game of control, mentally, physically, and with the ball. The better your technique with the ball the more likely you are going to win the game. The most important thing to have in your team are players who are happy and confident with the ball. Some players aren’t born naturally talented but if they are willing to practice and try hard enough they can be as good as anyone. Below we are going to go through a few soccer drills that will help.

First make sure that your players are happy with the ball, practice kick-ups, and basic ball control. This can be done as a fun thing for 5 minutes or so or if you prefer it can last a lot longer depending on the players’ ability and interest levels (you don’t want them to get bored!)

After this dribbling through a set of cones first at a slow pace before later making it competitive with a race scenario. Another favorite is to give each player a ball and put them in a square of roughly 20m squared. Let them dribble around with their ball changing direction every 5-10 seconds. Do this for 5-10 minutes before adding a bit more interest making the players kick out the other player’s ball, whilst protecting their own! These are fun soccer drills that also make the players conscious of what is around them and concentrate on looking after their own ball.

Now that you have gone through the basics in dribbling and ball retention now would be a good time for a couple of ball control soccer drills. This can be as simple as throwing a ball at a player and getting them to control the ball with their foot, knee, chest, or head. (be sure to train on all of these, particularly both the left and right foot as a two-footed player is always better than a one-footed player) try and get the players to do these soccer drills at a quick pace as if they do it sluggishly in training then they are going to struggle when it comes to the matchday!

By combining these fun soccer drills to your own ideas your player’s ball control and dribbling will improve. You and your players will get more confidence with the ball and this will show in a match situation hopefully on your way to victory!

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