Soccer dribbling drills and tips

Here is a selection of the best soccer dribbling drills to help your players run with the ball. Click on the headings for in-depth instructions on training techniques to improve dribbling skills.

1. Dribbling in a square

A simple soccer drill where your 11 players dribble the ball in an area 12 x 10 metres, making sure they avoid eachother and their soccer balls do not touch. The drill then advances to a timed exercise in a 12 x 12 metre area.

2. When to dribble

Some coaches believe that dribbling should be restricted to the attacking third of the pitch where losing possession is unlikely to result in a goal. This article encourages dribbling in other areas, providing your players are good enough to handle the situation.

3. Dribbling at speed

It is harder to run at pace with the ball than without it, and it is a frustrating sight to see your striker slow down to control the ball and get caught by the defender. This drill sees a midfielder dribble a ball through a goal at top speed, with one defender permitted to stop him.

4. Dribbling for wingers

Coaches must stress to their wingers that they should not be afraid of losing the ball. This article advises on good wing play, which means your players playing with their head up, using body feints to unbalance the defender and an ability to change direction.

5. The Stanley Matthews dribble

Sir Stanley Matthews is one of the most famous dribblers of them all, and in this drill your players will fake to go one way before turning the other, just as the Blackpool legend once did. At first get your attacker dribbling against a passive defender before taking the skill into a game situation.

6. Dribbling & shooting

This article features three dribbling and shooting drills with varying degrees of difficulty. The first has your striker facing two goalkeepers, then the play is forced wide and finally a defender is added. 

7. Dribbling at defenders

This drill aims to get your players comfortable running at defenders. Concentrate on your players’ ability to dribble and beat defenders with sudden changes in speed and direction along with feints. Points are awarded to the dribbler for each defender beaten.

8. Evasion and faking

Once your players have learned the proper mechanics of dribbling, they need to know how to beat their man. This drill encourages players to take on their opponents on the side of their standing leg, get them committed and then beat them on the other side.

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