Coaching Soccer Conditioning » Blog Archive » Conditioning Within a Small-Sided Game »

Coaching Soccer Conditioning » Blog Archive » Conditioning Within a Small-Sided Game ».


This simple drill will help development of fitness, communication and awareness to the flow of the game.

Today’s indoor practice may have a game similiar to this.

I can’t wait!


Crossing and Finishing |

Crossing and Finishing |.


I like this drill, but I can see how my younger players may get confused with all the patterns of flow.


I think a modified version of this drill will help my 1st graders find a better open position and flow. While having the 2nd graders set them up.

Game wrap up – Tulips VS Orchids

Through out the game I was reminded how different I am from other coaches in our division.

It all started at the first throw in, the Orchid player threw the ball at a girl who used her hands to catch the ball. While this action isn’t uncommon among newer players, the coaches reaction was not appropriate! There was no supportive “try not to use your hands” or “a general statement of “girls remember no hands”, instead what was said had a more direct line of “come on so and so, you know better” and “what are you doing” was often said.

This being said I watch the other team cower to the coach and play in more fear or a general sense of no motivation. I did feel sad for that team, they had great potential and I think some practice on moving the ball to get the key players in scoring positions would make all the difference.  That is just a tactical thing I believe they should work on, there are other blaring issues with the team.

The coach this week was a woman who be-little the girls with every moment of possible positive re-enforcement. It’s always obvious that when a goalie doesn’t get the ball! So why would anyone want to point that fact out again? Instead I yelled “great try goalie!” mind you this was the opposing teams goalie! Every great play or pass on their team was met with some positive re-enforcement on my part.


Now don’t worry, I cheered our girls every step of the way! Every pass was acknowledge, every defensive move, shot on goal or assist to a teammate, I didn’t care that we gave up 3 goals, I witness great potential at the goalie position. It’s hard with only an hour a week to practice goalie items but this week may differ.

Practice this week will cover several techniques, one of them being goalie. At the goalie position, aggressive play is needed, go get the ball, don’t back up. If I can teach that then we are golden! The next item is that I plan to move my 1st graders into the scoring attack this week. I plan to load my defense with the skill players and feed the ball up to the 1st graders to score. So I’ll work on position awareness… maybe! I also plan to work on foot skills or ball control, I noticed I have some fast girls but I need to have them work on ball control to make them truly unstoppable.

So my last words today are simple, confidence. We of the Pee Wee league division are here to enable confidence in the girls, does this mean they have to win? No, it means that we as coaches need to give positive feedback and encouragement, regardless of the situation or flaw we as coaches are here to help develop these players to young soccer stars. We will fail with every negative comment and unhappy/ sad/ tormented player!


Thats all –


Coach John


Game 4 of our 8 game season

So this past weekend we played our rematch from week one.


All I can say is that my girls rock. Over the last few weeks I’ve noticed some drop offs from other teams…. but not mine! All my girls show up at practice and games, they truly look like they are having a great time. I bring this up because I had to have 3 girls sit out every quarter, something I didn’t take into account when we started the game. But this little fact almost cost me the game. I know it’s about having fun but I do have a competitive side to me.

At the start of the game I put in all the 2nd graders not thinking about the later rounds. Well sure enough that first quarter we were winning 3-0, but that was just the beginning. The next quarter I quickly realized my mistake when I had to sit out one second grader and two first graders.  I knew I would have to sit down multiple second graders going forward…. not good! So to finish the half it was 4-1. At the Start of the second half I transitioned my first graders to offense more then mid fielders and moved my second graders to defense while sitting two of them out. By the end of the 3rd quarter it was 4-5, yes I was a little twisted. But the good news is that I was able to put my daughter at goalie and have one remaining second grader sit out. You know I’m a proud parent but I can honestly say my daughter kicked butt. She was able to block several goals while giving way to one (which I missed). But the flip side is that my girls were able to turn up the heat and counter with three goals of their own.

Moral to the story…. Plan ahead! I didn’t take into consideration the diversity my first graders would have. They had to play against a mainly second grade team.  That mistake wont happen again this year but it was a good learning lesson for me.

I am very proud to be coaching this team, each girl has been tentative to follow my instruction and willing to be taught a new trick.

Thank god for youtube! Most of my drills come from youtube clips or other soccer coaching sites. If you need information on either feel free to let me know and I’d love to help you out!


Take Care!


For our Next Practice… Transitional Possession Game |

Transitional Possession Game |.


Here is a setup I am considering for our next practice. The girls have shown a great amount of communication and now I want to improve their tatical awareness.


This seem like a great exercise for positional awareness and communication.


Fall practice – not enough time

As the cooler winds blow and the sun begins to shorten it’s time of light per day, practices seems to get harder and harder.

The lack of sun and warm is something we have to get over. We can’t start earlier but we can try to cramp in a little more before the light gives way to the dark.

Last night we had a 45 min practice and I think it went well. It’s hard to tell what sticks with the kids and what doesn’t. I’ll know for sure Saturday morning. I like to do a 1v1 practice with my daughter but last night she may have injured her knee so we are taking a break and we will resume Saturday morning.

Things are coming along well for the girls, lots of competitive fire an lots of communication.

More to come on game day!

Soccer Duck Hunt | U10 Soccer Drills & Games

Soccer Duck Hunt | U10 Soccer Drills & Games.



I think this would be a great cool down game to play with the team. After a skill set training I can see how this game environment would help instill the newly taught skill and application!

Recap Last Weeks Game

Well, after a week of waiting to make her first “good” goal… my daughter was eager. I had worked with her on several things last week that I felt would elevate her game a little. First, I showed her how to change her pace. After she practiced that a little I showed her how to stop the ball and change direction real quick. As you may have noticed, I don’t know the technical terms used in these moves however, I have been able to watch her and the other girls to see how they can change/ add little things at this stage of development and really leap-board into something greater.

On the change of pace move, I simply taught her to time her runs with her foot strikes.  If a defender is close by she could run to the ball, then slow down in hopes of the defender over running the play. I practiced this with her, and she seems to grab it pretty well. She applied this on a one v one opportunity and it worked. The next time she tried it, she had several players around her and it didn’t work out so well. We talked after the game and she understood the concept of single and multiple defenders. I taught her that when multiple people are around her, that means that someone on her team is open… I was making her aware of the open man, or open space.

On the change of direction move, it was an evolution of the change of pace. I taught her to approach the ball fast, stop it, then speed up on the back side of the defender. Again, she tried this during the game but the result wasn’t as equal. She attempted the move when the defender had already passed her, there by giving them a chance to re position and attack the ball. She did learn that thinking ahead will play great dividends with plays like this one.

Lastly, I showed her the basic step to performing a move that I love to see player pull. It’s more of a back foot pass behind the defender. Cristiano Ronaldo performs this type of move whenever the defender is at an equal pace. He will dart down the sideline and with his foot farthest from the defender, kick the ball behind him and change direction. Two things usually happen, One the defender is totally out of position and an open lane is presented or two the defender is out of position and pulls the player down, giving way to a free kick. Now this move may be advanced for a 7 year old, but teaching the basic steps, and allowing her to practice it and speed up seems to really work.

I’ve said it before, what she lack in raw physical talent she overcomes with sheer determination!

Now the rest of the team, by no means are they just supporting cast. I believe the strength of our team is how unified they are. In just 3 weeks I’ve seen a lot of new pairing and setups. Several of the better kickers sent crosses into the goalie area for their teammates to score on. I witnessed a lot of communication in defense and especially in offense.  The girls had great movement on the ball and even the younger girls really showed possession and ball handling skills.

Today’s practice may be rained out which is somewhat sad, but it gives me a chance to look at some of the things that we need to work on. This team is great but the girls should be learning new skills and not just simply evolving with the level of the game. I will focus on defensive positioning and guards, not sure that’s the right word but in review of several YOUTUBE videos on defensive training, I think footwork and positioning are key. I’d like to end the season with giving girls a nice overall knowledge of soccer. the last thing these girls will work on is the goalie training. As they prepare to enter the competition divisions I’d like to for them to be able to cover the goal and defend. Seems like these girls are all primed for offense.

!!!GO TULIPS!!!!

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Coaching Soccer Conditioning » Blog Archive » Integrate Conditioning Into Small-Sided Games »






Coaching Soccer Conditioning » Blog Archive » Integrate Conditioning Into Small-Sided Games ».


I signed up for several coaching websites. This one has great team information and even promotes a packet of information in training. I think tonight’s practice may have some of these exercises mixed in.



I’ll let you know how that goes.

%d bloggers like this: