"Tips and techniques on how
to use the Cruyff Turn"

The Cruyff turn is a move invented by the famous Dutch player, Johann Cruyff. He was a master soccer player in the 1970's who played for the Dutch National team and Ajax in Holland.

Check out the master for yourself!

Players that get this soccer turn mastered will be deadly on the turn and great at getting out of pressure. I love seeing my kids get this turn mastered.

So, here goes...

the player will generally have some pressure on them when using the soccer turn or just use it to turn into space. Unlike the cut the Cruyff turn requires the player to...

  • Get the plant foot down wide of the the ball with the toe pointed in the direction the player is going to turn.
  • Right foot turn - plant left foot on the left side of the soccer ball.
  • Left foot turn - plant the right foot on the right side of the soccer ball.
  • Make sure there is space between the plant foot and the ball so the ball does not hit the plant foot on the turn.
  • Bring the big toe of the kicking foot behind the ball.
  • Take the touch behind the plant foot and spin out the opposite way.
  • Make the touch travel so the soccer ball does not get caught in the players feet, which requires a slight flick with the big toe to get the soccer ball moving.

You now have the basics of the the soccer turn - practice time!

Cruyff turn soccer practice

The players work on basic soccer touches getting comfortable with the soccer ball - a good warm up.

Intro the soccer turn...

I like to demo the turn a couple of times so the players see where to put their feet and what the turn looks like - paint a picture.


The first thing I tell the kids is look at it like a clock - the player wants to go from 6 o'clock to 12 O'clock - so it is a complete turn.

Break down the skill first so the players get the idea.

  • Get the plant foot next to the ball with the foot pointed in the direction the player wants to go...the player must really emphasize the step and put the foot down.
  • Bring the kicking foot behind the ball - use the toe to flick the ball behind the standing leg.
  • Getting the touch out in front so the ball does not get stuck and the player can accelerate into space.

Once the player has the basics down I let them go and try the skill out with no pressure - 1 minute games.

Coaching points:

The kids will run into a few common mistakes when learning the turn - they are very easily fixed!

Cutting the ball in front of the plant foot like an inside foot cut.

  • The player is not getting the plant foot on the opposite side of the ball from the turning foot.

Hitting the plant foot when turning.

  • The player needs to get the plant foot away from the soccer ball - step further away.
  • Not Getting the plant foot down or lifting the plant foot before turning.
  • The player is not planting the foot or getting the foot wide enough to get behind the plant foot.
  • Not acting like they are faking the a shot or another move.

Once they basic movements down see if they can pull the move off in small sided games.

3v3 or 4v4 games

The coach can introduce small sided games at the end of soccer practice. While the kids are playing small sided games like 3v3 or 4v4 the coach can observe to see which player can use a Cruyff turn. If the coach sees a good turn then he or she can give the players points.

Enjoy your coaching!


Return to Soccer turns from The Cruyff turns

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