Tag Archives for " D Johnson "

Color Passing and Movement

By David Johnson

Objective
This session will focus on players thinking before the ball is passed and moving without the ball to open space.   Following a color sequence predetermines the passing but movement is player driven.  The players should open up to the passer as well as be in a position to pass immediately the next player in the pattern.   1-2 touch is the objective with constant ball movement and communication.

Set Up
Using the set up as above. 4 cones are placed in a diamond shape 10-12 yards apart.   4 players each wearing a different color practice jersey start at each cone.  1 player starts with 1 ball.

Execution
The coach calls out a color pattern such as RED, GREEN, YELLOW, BLUE.   This indicates to the players the order in which the ball must be passed to each player.  So the RED players passes to GREEN and then GREEN passes to YELLOW, and then YELLOW passes to BLUE.  The last color in the sequence then passes to first color to start the pattern again.  So in this example BLUE would pass to RED to start the pattern again.   The excrise begins with no player movement as the ball just passes around based on the color pattern.   The coach should change the color pattern every 45-60 seconds to make players adjust to new angles.

Progressions
After the ball is passed the passer must switch with the player on any other cone except the player that just received the ball.  So if RED passes to GREEN then RED must switch with either YELLOW or BLUE.  This requires thoughtful movement of the players without the ball.  Now the ball might be passed to a player on the move between cones.  This creates much more game like dynamics.

 Variation
Only have 3 players on the 4 cones.  The movement after the pass is then to the open cone.  The color pattern is then only 3 colors.

Coaching Points
– Open up to accept the pass and be ready to send it to the next color in the pattern.
– Ensure players are receiving the ball with the correct foot to ensure position to shield the ball from the defense
– A passive defender can be added to the middle of the diamond

By David Johnson

David Johnson has been a high school coach for more than 20 years.

Team Finishing Inside the Penalty Area

By David Johnson

Objective
This session will focus on crossing and immediate finishing.  The focus needs to be on proper height, accuracy and direction of the cross and the quality and creativity of the finish. Communication including calling for the ball and what areas are open such as calling “switch” are critical.

Set Up
In a penalty area, there are 2 teams of players.   There are 4 players from each team in the grid forming a 4v4 situation.  There are 2 players from each team at the upper corners of the area with a supply of balls ready to send in immediately once the ball is out of play.  The service rotates between teams – the players on the outside can cross, play it on the ground to a checking player, or try to finish directly on net.  The players are rotated every 2-3 minutes.

Execution
The exercise begins with cross from the corner players.   The objective is to look for a creative finish immediately.  Passing is only there to setup a clear shot.   Defense is active meaning that all tackles and pass deflection is allowed.

Coaching Points
• Change the middle 4 players frequently.  Every 3 minutes or so
• Finishes should be fast and furious – your keeper will get many different looks
• Add touch restrictions – 2, 1 touch
• Restrict finishes only after 2 passes,  heading, pass backs from goal, etc.

By David Johnson

David Johnson has been a high school coach for more than 20 years.

Possession focused on 1v1 duels

By David Johnson

Objective
This session will focus on passing and maintain possession.  The focus needs to be on proper weight and direction of the pass and the quality and creativity of the runs. Communication including calling for the ball and what areas are open such as calling “switch” are critical.

Set Up
In a 20x 20 grid, there are 2 teams of players.   There is 3 players from each team in the grid forming a 3v3 situation.  There are 2 players (1 from each team on the outside of the grid).   The pairs on the outside are not allowed to enter the grid but are options for maintaining possession for the 3v3.

Execution
The 3v3 begins with normal possession games.   The outside players can be options to maintain possession.   The outside players are restricted to 2 touch and the opposing team member on the outside can only intercept the pass to the outside.  Once the outside player touches it – no pressure from the outside players.  The focus is to anticipate and intercept passing lanes not 1v1 defending.  This exercise continues for 3 minutes before rotation of the 3v3 inside players.

The next iteration is for the outside players to be able to play each other with more active defending on the outside.  Again only passes can be intercepted – there is not challenges on the ball in possession.  However a bad touch that results in the ball not in control can be taken by the other team.  See diagram 2.

Coaching Points
• Change the middle 3 players frequently.  Every 3 minutes or so
• Passes must be weighted properly and sent to the correct foot of the receiver
• Remind players of in game situations where this is valuable and how the decisions of your teammates affects your decisions and options.
• Add touch restrictions – 2, 1 touch
• Add more defensive pressure by allowing 1v1 attacks on the outside
• Points awarded for consecutive passes or playing a certain outside player.

By David Johnson

David Johnson has been a high school coach for more than 20 years.

Pre-Season Fitness

By David Johnson

Objective
This session will focus on overall fitness of the player.   These sessions can be done with a ball or without a ball focusing on balance and acceleration.  The key to this session is for the player to operate at game speed.

Set Up
Position 6 agility poles in two lines.  The lines are 10 yards apart with the poles being 15 yards apart from each other in the line.  The players are lined up behind a cone at the end of the two lines

Execution
The first run through the poles is to simply weave around each pole.  Ensure the player slows down as he reaches the pole to make the turn with balance and control.  Then once he has completed the turn to burst toward the next pole.  This repeats until the end of the lines.  After they reach the cone on the far side, the player jogs back to the line.  As shown in Diagram 2.

The next progression is for the players to sprint straight ahead to the end of the line and side shuffle in a “Z” pattern to the other line.  Once at the other line then sprint to the end.  Be sure to change the lines the players start on so the side shuffle will reverse the “Z” pattern.   See diagram 3.

The next progression is to change to backpedal as the players reach the first pole in the line.  At the next pole they reverse back to forward.  This pattern continues alternating between forward and backpedal through out both lines.  See Diagram 4.

Variation
• The players can run 360 degrees around each pole before sprinting to the next one.

• The players can form 2 lines and race alternating forward and backpedal across the poles.

Coaching Points
• Ensure the players have good balance and control as they reach each change of direction station.

• Ensure the players accelerate with a tremendous burst of speed.

• The players can complete each progression more than once.  3 runs per set is a good benchmark.

• At the end of each set have the players perform push-ups, jumping jacks, etc to increase the workload

By David Johnson

David Johnson has been a high school coach for more than 20 years.

Passing Patterns

By David Johnson –

Objective

This session will focus on passing and game like patterns of play.  The focus needs to be on proper weight and direction of the pass and the quality of the runs.  The focus is also on moving without the ball.  This should be done as close to game speed as possible.  Communication including calling for the ball and what areas are open such as calling “line” are critical.   Over emphasis is very critical for players to remember not only the passing patterns but the verbal commands as well.

Diagram 1

Set Up

There are 2 lines facing each other with 2 players facing the line with the ball.  The drill begins with the players nearest the ball calling for the ball.

Execution

The first pass is to the nearest player.   The passing player moves to the right or the left opening up space for a pass back.   This determines the angles of the rest of the drill.  The second player checks to the same line as the passing player.  The ball is played back to the original player.

Diagram 2

The next movement is for the player to pass a long ball to the checking second player.   Once that pass is made the original player makes a diagonal run through the space calling for a return pass.   The player on the line plays it to the feet of the diagonal run.

Diagram 3

The drill then flips to the other line and the drill flips.   The most important movement is the first decision by the passing line as to the which direction they go – that determines which line the pass is made to and what angle the diagonal run is made.

Diagram 3

Coaching Points

  • Change the middle two players frequently. Every minute or so
  • Passes must be weighted properly and sent to the correct foot of the receiver
  • Remind players of in game situations where this is valuable and how the decisions of your teammates affects your decisions and options.

By David Johnson

David Johnson has been a high school coach for more than 20 years.