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U9 Positional Play Advice

What options are there for positional play in the U9s game? What formations are recommended in attack or defence? What's a good place to start teaching this? No scrums at this level so that's out of the question. Greatful for any advice. Thank you. Matt
Asked using Sportplan Mobile App

Hi Matt,

We've just started with U9 and my recommendation is to work on introducing half backs at the breakdown.

A rule is introduced at U9 which states that a supporting player that rips the ball (anything that isn't a pass) must pass the ball. They cannot run, or be tackled.

So this gives us a lot of opportunities to reset the defence and work on the offside line, identify space for the attackers and also get the attackers organised in those few moments where the stand in number 9 is taking the ball.

You can add presentation of the ball into this too.

Simple flat defence is good and maintaining the line is important (and a challenge).

Diamond formation in attack gives options as does a simple deep line.

Good luck with it and if you like i can publish a 4v4 game i'm going to try out which encourages all of the above.

Hi Rob thanks for this, it would be great to see how you 4v4 goes. Do you have any preference for how players are positioned in the line based on their best attributes e.g. Speed or driving with the ball etc?


Answered using Sportplan Mobile App

Hi Matt,

As most kids are no where near full physical development then I would recommend that you just let the kids play and not worry about positions for quite a while. The kid who is a 'bit slow and chubby' may develop into a lean fly half, the kid that is very fast and nippy may bulk out and so on. I have found that the better / stronger / faster kids are simply the kids that are oldest and if you were tempted to try to get your fasted player on the wing then they may simply not get the ball.

I would work on getting all players involved and touching the ball and simply work on the fact that the nearest player takes the position by the ball carrier and so on.

With regards to formations then simply a flat line in defence (going 1 vs 1) and the sloping 'ducks' type V formation and stress the importance of support runners.

Thanks Adam, that's very helpful advice.


Answered using Sportplan Mobile App

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  • or access our tried and tested plans