Soccer is a beautiful game. It is a game of movement and creative flow, the ball zig-zagging along the pitch, bouncing between players, with spaces exploited and individual brilliance championed.
Do you want to be a great soccer player? It is an arduous task, filled with hours with a ball, who is now officially your constant companion. But the rewards of joyously expressing yourself on the pitch in millions of different ways will surely make all the training worthwhile.
How To Play Soccer
Soccer is a game where a set of individuals must place a round ball into an area designated as the goal. That is the most basic premise of the game.
Flowing from that are ideas such as dribbling, passing, and shooting. The set of individuals looking to score a goal must share the ball between themselves (passing), while also being willing to move the ball forward to the opposing team’s goal themselves (dribbling), eventually attempting to place the ball into the other team’s goal (shooting).
You must master all three phases, and the categories within each phase, to learn how to play effectively.
Soccer Dribbling Skills
There are a number of ways to develop your soccer dribbling skills.
What is essential to master, however, is close control of the ball with your head up. That is, you should be able to make the ball move while you constantly survey your surroundings. One way to develop this skill is to always have a ball with you.
If you are a young child, consistently have a ball at your feet and dribble around the house as you go about your daily activities. You need not even have an actual soccer ball. In fact, the smaller the object you dribble consistently, the easier it will be for you to dribble the larger, clumsier soccer ball. Just make sure to spend as little time as you can actually looking at the ball.
Passing and Shooting
The reason you do not want to look down as you dribble is because you always want to be looking for a pass or a shot.
Passing can be done with any part of the foot: inside, outside, or the ‘laces’. Practice your passing with a friend, using a different part of your foot every time you pass, or against a wall. Make sure to practice your weak foot as well.
Shooting is similar. The only difference with shooting is that when attempting a power shot, you will shoot with your laces and follow through with your shooting leg, landing on it after powering through the ball. Create a goal with some sticks and practice hitting the ball off the dribble into a specific area from different distances.
Here are a list of skills that you must master after learning the basic three.
1. Master trapping the ball with every part of your body except your hands and head. One way to do this is to throw the ball up to yourself, trapping it as it comes down. Or throw the ball against a wall in different ways, trapping it as it comes to you.
2. Master dead ball situations. Practice hitting the ball from a stationary position into the goal. Curl the ball by making contact with the outside of the ball and following all the way through until your foot points at where you wanted to go.
3. Master the basics of movement. Play small sided games with your friends so you can get an idea of how to move during a game. Some basic things to learn are things such as:
- 1. Positioning yourself at an angle from a player with the ball
- 2. Running off the ball to distract defenders
- 3. Making runs behind the defense, looking for through balls