Grassroots Coaching

Football Training – First Time Passing

To be able to pass first time, players will need to try and think one step ahead. They will have to visualise where they are going to pass, before they receive the ball. Other factors that will influence their decisions will be the weight, speed and accuracy of the pass they are receiving and the early support and communication of the receiving players.

In this first video, we see a group of young players playing “Rondo” or “piggy in the middle” a simple possession game played by all the to European clubs, very often as part of their warm up. This can be played 4 v 1, progressing to 3 v 1. As the players get better the size of the grid can be decreased.

In this video, the young players are more advanced that the players in the first video. They are also playing 3 v 1 Rondo in a square. Notice the movement of the players off the ball, they way they move early to support the player on the ball and the decisions they make about passing first time or control and pass.

In this progression, the players are still playing 3 v 1 in a grid. But, now there is a ball placed in the middle, that the defenders have to try and defend and the players have to try and hit with a pass. Notice how they try and pull the defender about, before opening up the pass to try and hit the ball.

Here is a great video of Barcelona, playing a form of Rondo – but in a circle and on the move. For our players to get anywhere near this level, they have to start with the basics and playing Rondo on a regular basis helps them.

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