Best soccer passing drills

Keeping possession is vital to a team’s chances of success, so here are 10 of the best soccer passing drills to keep your players in the ascendancy during matches.

Click on the headings for in-depth instructions on how to implement the soccer passing drills.

1. Short passing

This short passing drill focuses on making low passes with the inside of your foot which are easy for a team-mate to control. It includes a 4-point plan on how to pass accurately with the inside of your foot.

2. Shuttle passing

A detailed breakdown of how to set up and develop the shuttle passing drill. You can make the drill competitive by challenging your groups of players to see who can make the most passes in a minute. The drill encourages quality passes, quick turns and hard work.

3. Passing with the head

The ball is often given away cheaply by players heading without purpose. This drill will get your players heading the ball in the right direction, meaning possession is retained and attacks can be built. First ensure your players are heading straight, then get them to direct the ball.

4. Passing with either foot

Possession is often given away by players attempting passes with their weaker foot. This ball manipulation drill encourages your players to pass with either foot. It focuses on dribbling while using various parts of either foot to control the ball.

5. Passing backward in attack

Sometimes taking the less direct route can be the most effective way of opening up a defence. An attacker surrounded by defenders and with little space can help their team by drawing in the opposition before passing the ball back. Support players should then have more space to run into.

6. Reverse passing

Using the reverse pass is an excellent way to deceive the opposition. This drill will encourage players to look around them and seek other options rather than passing the ball in the direction they are running.

7. Switching the ball

Switching the ball can be effective going forward and in relieving the pressure on a defence. Good teams switch frequently and employing the tactic can often catch the opposition sleeping. Your players will start to expect a switch in play once they have practiced this drill a few times.

8. Forward passing

This drill is about not only making the forward pass, but also getting forward to support the attacker. It is more likely that a player in the frontline will lose the ball if they are isolated, so getting team-mates around them is vital. The article also shows you how to put the drill into a game situation.

9. Passing on the run

This drill helps your players make the transition from static passing to passing on the run. Control, accuracy and the correct weight of pass are all key to carrying out this drill successfully and your players may soon realise it is not as simple as they first thought.

10. Distance passing

Six or more players are required for this distance passing drill which should be set up in an area of approximately 10 x 40m. It is all about getting the technique right first before adding power later. You can increase the difficulty by getting your players to hit the pass first time.

Soccer coaching tips


Improve your soccer training skills. Sign up for a FREE weekly email, full of simple proven tips, advice and drills.

"I look forward to every issue because it is concise and filled with great information. In times like this, with very busy schedules, it is invaluable. I highly recommend it."
Victor Gascon, Coach, USA







Please note that Better Soccer Coaching takes your privacy very seriously. We will never rent or sell your email address to any third party.






Get our FREE weekly coaching tips email






Receive GREAT coaching tips to help you become
a better soccer coach, straight to your inbox!

Please note that Better
Soccer Coaching
takes your privacy very seriously. We will never rent or sell your email address to any third party

Find out more

Recommended:





Proud Corporate Member of the National Soccer Coaches Association of America