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Hi i coach an under 13s side and they play great pass?

Hi i coach an under 13s side and they play great pass and move football but we are weak when defending does anyone know any decent defence drills where they are required to work as a unit

Hi Mr B, it's tricky to find a single drill that covers all the defensive skills. I suggest that you start with explaining and practicing discipline in the most important task: every player must be on the defensive side of their opponent.

Being on the defensive side of your opponent means that every player immediately must position themselves on the line between their opponent and their own goal as the team looses possesion.

You often find young players marking and defending from the wrong position. They tend to come from the side or try to tackle tha ball too early and from the wrong side. As long as everybody very quickly gets on the defensive side of their opponent 80% of the job is done. Being on the defensive side is hard work and discipline. The rest in defense (marking distance, delay, pressure, cover etc) are skills that you build on later.

You can practice this in any small sided game. If you practice on a large space they will have to work harder and it will become more evident if they're on the right side or not!

The thing with childrens footbal is they all want to be involved all the time and the better players tend to play a lot of the time out of positision. What you have to do is make them aware of where they are playing and their roles when attacking and defending. One drill that I use for them to understand what they need to do when they need to keep their shape and defend is that i get two teams line them up in their starting positions and then get them to move around with a ball in pairs, threes the numbers are up to you then blow a whistle or shout defend then they run back into their postions and the 1st team to do this scores a point for every position they get to before their opponent does. Run this a few times and the kids enjoy the points system!

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  • search our library of 500+ football drills
  • create your own professional coaching plans
  • or access our tried and tested plans