Develop a deft first touch
Stop the ball dead and pick out a team-mate with this drill from the Nike Academy's head coach, Jimmy Gilligan
THE SET-UPFour 5 x 5-yard service areas are marked out with a control zone in the middle, 12 yards from each service area. Position four servers inside the service areas, three of them with a ball each. Place a receiver in the control zone.
THE DRILLOn the coach’s command, one of the servers plays a sidefoot pass into the receiver, who has to control it inside the square before passing to the spare man. If they fail to keep the ball inside the zone they lose a point. Then the next delivery comes in from a different server. To progress the drill, tell the servers to play passes in with their laces, and then to chip the ball so the receiver has to control and volley it back into their hands. Change the receiver every 45 seconds.
HOW THIS HELPSAs well as working the players’ first touch, you’re challenging them to show awareness and precision to find the spare man.
Take control of the game
Hit the target every time
Finish at speed
Must see stories in this section
- Steven Pienaar: Sharpen your skills
- Steven Pienaar: Pick the perfect pass
- Train to win
- Make the ball stick to your feet
- Win every tackle
- Stand up to the opposition
- Victor Valdes' guide to shot-stopping
- Victor Valdes' guide to winning one-on-ones