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Break through a team that is playing half court press?

How can you train to break through a team that starts half court and your team starts with the ball? Four players in the defence start maybe playing the ball first to the left wing and this player hits the ball back to the free defence player who passes the ball to the right defence player who is over the 23 meter line... I like to understand the different tactical approaches. Can you share some ideas with me?

Movement from the midfield and attacking players is key. First of all though, the defenders should push up with the ball as high as possible towards the halfway line. This can be done with one player self-passing and fellow defenders pushing up with him/her.

This decreases the distance between defence and midfield. A key point for the midfielders is rotation. Switching positions will confuse their markers and free up space for the midfielders to receive a pass.

Another idea is to tire out the opposition forwards. If your defenders can transition the ball across the back quickly, multiple times, this will leave opposition forwards out of position eventually, hopefully leaving free space for your half-backs to push on down the wing with the ball and into opposition territory.

In addition, a risky tactic, but one that could be rewarding is crash ball. This involves your forwards posting up from a high position to receive the ball, and the defending player on the ball hitting the ball (hard) for the forward to collect. The forwards must be intelligent with the timing and position of their runs, to areas where opposition players could not intercept the hit.

Hope this helps!

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  • search our library of 1000+ hockey drills
  • create your own professional coaching plans
  • or access our tried and tested plans