Soccer warm-up game for controlling the ball

One of the things coaches I talk to find hard is making players warm up for matches… properly.

In a lot of cases, players just stand around the penalty area firing shots at the goalkeeper.

Shooting in this way is not warming up because most players just stand in the area and try to kick the ball. They’re not moving and they’re not thinking.

Take them away from the goalmouth and set up a game like this one. They will be passing, receiving and controlling the ball while listening out for you to call their number.

How to play it

  • Arrange your players into two groups.
  • Let the two groups number themselves one to four.
  • Tell the players to pass the ball to each other and move around in their areas.
  • Call out a number and that player must sprint across to the opposite area to join that team and continue to pass and move.
  • Or you could call out a number and that player must dribble the ball across to the opposite area.

This exercise is taken from The Ultimate Soccer Warm-Ups Manual.

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