"How to teach players passing
in a fun and dynamic way"

What is the trick to teaching passing so young players are not bored? Try to avoid lines and make the practices dynamic.

The trick to teaching this topic is to try and find games that the kids will enjoy... Coaching kids to improve technique so they can control the ball is obviously a two fold process. The pass and receiving the soccer ball.

The technique involved in a good soccer pass is...

  • Plant foot next to the ball first - this determines direction as well.
  • The kicking foot is toe up and ankle locked and heel down - using the side of the inside foot.
  • The player swings the kicking foot through the middle
    of the ball with the knees slightly bent.
  • The key to keeping the ball going in the direction of the
    target is keeping the shoulders and head straight while
    leaning slightly forward.

This will take more than just one session to teach the kids to develop passing accuracy, so the coach will need to be patient. Check out this video on passing!

Developing a good first touch

I really enjoy watching kids with a good first touch because they always look like they have so much time and space. Why is this? They do not have to think about the ball because their touch is so good...so the player now lifts their head and can see the field.

The soccer technique for receiving the soccer ball is also toe up, heel down and ankle locked.

  • When the soccer ball is close the player plants the non-kicking foot and prepares the receiving foot.
  • It is very important that the player has the receiving foot prepared early, otherwise the soccer ball will bounce away or roll under the foot.
  • Once the pass hits the receiver's foot, the receiver should pull the foot back to cushion the soccer ball.
  • I can't stress it enough how important it is for young players to develop a good first touch when playing soccer.

A fun two touch passing exercise

An easy game to teach young players is just a simple exercise with a time limit...

The coach puts the players in pairs...

  • The pairs will play the ball back and forth working on the skills, the players have to take two touches - 1 minute game.
  • Give the players a chance to get the hang of the exercise.
  • Once the players get the hang of the game the coach should now have the players compete. How many passes can each pair complete in a row in one minute.
  • If the pair makes a mistake and the ball does not go between the cones they begin at zero again. The pair takes the highest score to the coach.

The kids will run over with the scores to see who wins - turns into a big game.

Variation: Play one touch or right foot left foot...

A fun one touch exercise

This is a game for players who have some skill probably good for U10 - U12 player and some advanced U9's.

To get the game going...

  • The players play one touch, but every time they play a ball they move in towards each other.
  • Once the players get close they move out again and keep the game going.

The players must apply the right amount of power when they hit the ball, as they move in and out. The further back the players go the harder the players hits the ball - the closer the player gets - the softer the player hits the ball.

Peg the ball

To start Peg the ball...

  • The players all enter a 20x30 grid with a soccer ball.
  • The players try and peg the other players soccer balls with a pass.
  • If the player is successful they get a point. The players play till they reach between 15 - 20 points - coaches choice.

Points to remember...

  • Keep the ball on the ground.
  • Aim and hit the soccer ball where the target is going.
  • Learn to fake and set up the target.

Play these variations...

  • The players must be no closer than 5 yards before they can attempt to peg a another players ball.
  • Use the other foot.

The players play 3v3 or 4v4 games to see if they can apply the soccer skills. I like to give points if I see the soccer skill come into play during the soccer game.

Check out soccer practice plans here and get more tips, practices and ideas to add to your season.

Return to Soccer skills from Passing

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Coaches soccer equipment.

Teach young players how
to play attacking soccer.
Why first touch is so important?
Turning the soccer ball.

Coaches, do you want to make soccer fun and motivate your players? Soccer patches are a great motivational tool that can be used for goals, assists, good defending or skills competitions. The kids love patches!!