Score a screamer like a Euros legend
Gazza’s lob and volleyEngland vs Scotland,
Euro 96 Group A
Before he latches onto the pass, Gazza sneaks a look to see where Colin Hendry is, reading the Scottish defender’s movement and body position. This information helps Gazza decide what to do. Knowing Hendry is committed, he uses his body shape to feign bringing the ball down or hitting the shot first time. Instead, he uses his left instep to gently lob the ball over Hendry, before accelerating past him, keeping his eye on the ball and striking through it with his right instep as it comes down.
This one’s simple: you want to recreate Gazza’s skill by volleying the ball over your head with your left foot and controlling it with your right. Progress this by volleying it over your head with one foot before finishing with the other.
Marco van Basten’s volleyHolland vs USSR,
Euro 88 Final
From the moment the ball leaves Arnold Muhren’s left boot, Van Basten is focused on the flight of the ball. He starts shaping his body for the volley before it arrives, using his arms and standing foot for balance and pulling his leg back to connect at the optimum moment with maximum power. To counter the acute angle he swivels his hips to help wrap his foot around the ball and strikes through the middle of it for power and accuracy.
Two players face each other, standing five yards apart. One serves the ball in the air to the team-mate, throwing first to the right foot, then to the left. The receiver tries to volley the ball back into the arms of the server. After 10 serves they swap roles.
Davor Suker’s chipCroatia vs Denmark,
Euro 96 Group D
Suker’s first touch is key. It enables him to take the ball into his stride and onto his favoured left foot. He then looks to see where Peter Schmeichel is, before taking a second touch towards goal and executing the chip. He strikes the base of the ball, using his instep for elevation, and follows through by lifting his knee high.
Three players stand in a straight line, each eight yards apart. At one end a player starts with the ball and passes it along the ground into the feet of the middle player, who returns the pass. The end player then tries to chip the ball over the middle player to the player at the end. Swap the player in the middle every two minutes.
The Brolin-Dahlin one-two and finishSweden vs England,
Euro 92 Group A
The key here is that Tomas Brolin is always on the move. He doesn’t make a pass, then sit back and admire it. He punches the ball out of his feet and makes an angle to receive the ball. England’s defence is caught off guard because he delays his one-two with Martin Dahlin, then injects explosive pace. He gets his arms out for balance and to hold off the defender, taking the ball in his stride. Then he strikes with the outside of his boot, giving the defence and keeper no time to react.
Dribble a ball parallel to either a wall or a bench and play a pass at an angle against the surface, timing your run to meet the rebound. Start slowly then hit it harder to sharpen your reactions.
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