Last week, one of La Liga's top sides - Valencia C.F. - held a football camp for kids aged 5-18 years old in Albania. Head of Coaching Content Xhulio Zeneli had the opportunity to be one of the coaches of this camp, working with the youngest age group - 5-9. The camp lasted four days, with kids from different cities and countries taking part. One of the training days was focused entirely around passing, which Xhulio believes is the most important aspect of the game that a young player should learn. Passing may seem like a simple concept, but the art of passing extends to so much more beyond just technique. It extends to scanning of the field, receiving, moving into open space and recognizing how to take advantage of the opposition. So with that, here is a session plan all about how to pass to create an advantage.
It's seen less and less often today, but back in time warm-ups were hardly ever done with a ball and incorporated things like running laps and static stretching. Luckily, coaches of today have realized that warm-up activities can incorporate the ball, whether it be gradually or right away, and achieve the same outcomes of "warming-up". In fact, these activities not only get players moving and hypothetically help to decrease the risk of injury as a good warm-up should; but they also get players to practice their technical and tactical skills. This allows players to warm-up not just their muscles, but their brains as well. Here are 13 warm-up activities for young players, aged 6-14.
Many young and inexperienced players have the bad habit of kicking the ball away without looking. Sometimes it comes off, but most of the time these players are only playing into the hands of their opposition, as the opposition recovers the ball without having to do any defending. Players of any age need to learn … Continue reading Progressive Possession – Full Session Plan & Key Coaching Points
Playing out from the back is one of the most important elements of the modern game. Not only is it better for development than kicking it long, it is also easier and allows a team fewer risks at losing the ball. As a result, coaches of any age group should be looking to teach players young and old the necessary steps of playing out from the back. In order to help guide these coaches, we introduce a brand new session all about playing out from the back, for youth teams of any age.
All of the best professional clubs in the world have some clearly defined method of combination play in the final-third of the pitch. Although our youth teams might never be able to achieve the attacking flair of Borussia Dortmund or Liverpool, working hard on the training ground on Combination Play can still be tremendously helpful in the quest for greater attacking prowess.
Over and over again, young players around the world receive the ball from a passing player, square on, with their back turned to goal. This limits a player's ability to pass the ball forwards and keep play moving. Instead of receiving the ball square on, players must maintain an open body shape, aka receiving the … Continue reading The Importance of Receiving the Ball on the Half-Turn