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Possession From Goal Kicks

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possession goalkicks 


GK passes immediately to center backs or defensive midfielders from a goal kick to enable possession as opposed to kicking the ball long.

Game specific benefit

Improve your teams ability to keep possession from goal kicks and reduce the possibility of losing the ball which is common from goal kicks, especially when kicking the ball long.

Setup & Main Points

  • Use width of field (or smaller area depending on space available, mark out 18 yard box or similar)
  • 6 players – 4 defenders and 2 defensive midfielders (numbers can be adjusted if you have an age group with less players for example – 4 def and 2 mids for a 9-player team)
  • Players start together near PK spot – on coach’s command, explode out to set positions ready for goal kick
  • GK taking goal kick looking to pass to either center back or defensive midfielders
  • GK ‘disguises’ goal kick if necessary (to trick opponent who may be marking one center back) by looking one way then quickly turning and playing it to the other center back

Positioning & Passing Options

Option 1 – center backs (position is just outside 18 yard box, roughly level with 6 yard line)

Option 2 – defensive midfielders (position is just outside 18 yard box at top of box facing the goal)

When either center back (left or right) receives ball from GK, full back must offer an option to pass (should be right on the sideline) along with def midfielder being another option to pass inside (do not use this option if def mid is marked).

Touch limitation

No set touch limitation but aim for quick 1-touch or 2-touch passing if possible.


Once concept is understood, introduce 1 or 2 opponents to pressure the center backs and full backs to make passing more difficult.

Coaching Points

  • Reaction – Immediate reaction of players to find positions ready to receive pass from GK
  • Shape – Team/unit moving together and maintaining shape
  • Positioning – full backs shifted across when ball on other side of field
  • Communication – both from passer and open players looking to receive
  • Passing – firm passes to prevent any interceptions and keep ball circulating quickly



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