Soccer coaching tips to get defenders clearing the ball

Let's face it, during the course of a match there are going to be times when a defender is unable to control and shield the ball from attackers. In this instance he should be looking to kick the ball high and away from the danger zone to gain time for his team to regroup.

Just watch the best defenders in the world, they all have the skills to hoof the ball up in the air and away to buy time for the rest of the team to regroup. Clearing the ball out of bounds is a useful skill as it takes the immediacy and sting out of the attack.

I must stress though, this move should be used as an emergency tactic. Players should resist the urge to just boot the ball as hard as possible when defending in their own half – and they will be getting the call from all sides of the pitch "GET RID OF IT!". My tip is, don't be a soccer coach who continually shouts that…

Clearing the ball drill

Tips to coach this skill are simple, get your players to:

  • Have their eye on the ball.

  • Lean back.
  • Kick through the ball high and away.

Click here for more soccer coaching tips and techniques for clearing the ball.