How to exploit the space

Use this session to develop simple “catch and pass” skills to fix defenders and put the free player away – after reacting quickly to where the ball has come from. Don’t forget to run straight!

It encourages players to make use of a numerical advantage by realigning and drawing defenders.

  1. Put a feeder on two of the corners of the box.
  2. Three attackers line up behind one length of the box, ready to take a pass from either feeder, while two defenders stand opposite.
  3. The attackers’ task is to get the ball to the spare man.
  4. Shout which feeder will pass the ball – that player passes to the nearest attacker.
  5. The receiver runs into the box and passes to the middle player, who passes to the end player.
  6. Meanwhile, the defenders race forward, closing down the first and second receivers.

  1. They aim to touch the carrier (use two-handed touch).
  2. Depending on your players’ skills, adjust how far away they come from. Repeat, randomly choosing where the ball comes from.

  1. To develop, add another attacker in a larger box.
  2. Again, vary which side the ball comes from but now the defenders can choose who they cover.


  • Hands ready to catch.
  • Run up the pitch, not across.
  • Ball off the chest when you catch and when you pass.
  • Call for the ball.
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