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Coaches Corner


Coaches click Suffolk-FC-Concussion-Management-Policy for important information on Concussions and our SYAA Concussion Policy.

Coaches Code of Conduct can be found here: SYAA-Code-of-Conduct-for-Coaches.

Recreation Soccer Rules

Fall 2018 Excel version of PRACTICE GRID or in a PDF PRACTICE GRID

Technical Development


Training: Mix warm up with Technical Skill Development during the first segment of Practice (20-30 minutes). Play small sided games and give encouragement and goals for individual “creative” techniques. Make sure that your players keep score and develop competitive edge in all exercises and games.

Player Program: Design a specific @ home program for each player based on their technical deficiencies. Pre and Post Test the players and set measurable goals so you as the coach can track their progress.

Technical Skills

Dribbling: Game speed, inside outside, change of direction, change of speed

  • Passing: Proper weight on pass, to feet vs. lead receiver, inside foot, instep, chip, long and short passes

  • Vision: Look over your shoulder at all times, take a peak prior to receiving a ball or making a run

  • Runs (Support): Movement to make yourself or teammates available for a pass

  • Receiving: Body positioning (open up), directional 1st touch

  • 1st Touch: To read and avoid pressure, to set up next play (dribble, pass, shot)

  • Shielding: Wide base, contact with defender, seeking support

  • Moves: Quick deceptive change of direction to gain space and time (fakes & feints)

  • 1 v 1 play: Attacking with speed and deception to get into space behind defender (fakes & feints)

  • Use of Outside of Foot for Passing: Quick, disguised method to split or penetrate in tight spaces

  • Servicing Balls: When and how to serve driven or flighted balls

  • Finishing: Proper shooting and heading techniques (Placement vs. Power)

  • Free Kicks: Placement, power & finess

  • Attitude: Intensity yet composed in Attacking Area (Slow your mind) as well as other thirds of field

  • 1 v 1 Defending: make play predictable, give proper spacing, contain (protect space behind you), force mistake, win ball (use patients and stay on your feet as much as possible)

  • Defensive Heading: Clear ball high and long

  • Offensive Heading: head down to beat keeper or directional to set up teammates

  • Slide Tackling: When and how to block and when and how to clear

A Player will improve if they are willing to invest time and effort into these areas! Repetition at game speed vs. pressure is the key.

Team Tactics


  • Factors: Field Conditions, Weather, Desired Result, Available Healthy Players, Home or Away

  • Advanced Scouting: Ability to recognize opposing teams strengths/weaknesses & attacking/defending tendencies. Ability to identify dangerous players (players with special abilities) within the team.

  • Adjustments: Can you recognize when and how to make them as game progresses?


  • Shape: Chosen “Formation” based on your personnel

    • Defensive

    • Offensive

    • Individuals Roles within the Team

  • Defending: Make play predictable

    • Zonal

    • Man to Man

    • Zonal Man to Man

    • High Pressure

    • Low Pressure

    • Pressing'

    • Varied style based on score, desired result, fitness level, other team strengths

  • Attacking (System of Play): Minimize risk based on your teams technical level and which 1/3 of the field you are in

    • Developing speed of play, rhythm and patterns of play

    • Direct play'

    • Indirect play

    • Recognition of when & how to penetrate

    • Into high targets (feet/chest/head)

    • Into flanks

    • Space behind defenders

    • Through midfielders

    • Importance of Second balls and Knock-downs

  • Transition:

    • Defensive

      • Getting #’s behind the ball quickly

      • Immediate chase & ball pressure

      • Cover, Balance and Compactness by supporting defenders

      • Delay for players to recover

      • Tactical fouls

    • Offensive

      • Quick support

      • Early balls forward to targets

  • Restarts – Offensive or Defensive:

    • Quick restarts if attack is “on”

    • Take your time in dangerous areas if you have players with special abilities

    • Focus on defense – quick set up/organization led by keeper/center back (walls etc…)

For more coaching resources click here.