Fun game for kicking skills

It’s rare that I advise coaches to set up games and drills that require props, such as a wall, because not all soccer coaches will have access to one, but Slam is one game where it's worth making the effort.

Game to improve players’ kicking skills

If you want a game which can improve kicking skills, then look no further than Slam. Because it is such fun, your players will find they cannot stop playing this game and that’s what makes it a brilliant training and soccer coaching device.

game of Slam using a wall and two players who kick the ball to each other against the wall

How to play Slam!

  • Get your players into twos and put a small goal in front of a wall. Tell each player they have three lives.

  • The first player kicks the ball into the goal so that it rebounds out.
  • The second player must play the ball back into the goal before it stops and then the first player does the same.
  • They play until one misses the goal, lets the ball stop, cannot play it first time or gets hit by his own rebound. That player loses a life.

They play until one is out of lives.

Extend the game

You can expand or change the game by adding a second touch, or telling players they must use both feet or a different part of the same foot. Change the size or height of the goal and allow the ball to stop for young players.

What technique should your players use?

It’s a game that is all about kicking skills. Let your players experiment with how they kick the ball. At first it is important they just get the ball back – especially in the younger age groups. You are looking for them to react to the position of the ball and the position of their opponent. Don’t worry if they just toe-punt at first. Pick them up on it later.

Your players must use their brains as well

  • Each player must be aware of the position of the opponent.

  • Tell your players to gently pass the ball if his opponent is far back so that he has to run hard in order that he gets to the ball before it stops rolling.
  • Or if his opponent is close to the goal, slam it hard and make him chase back.
  • Tell him to read the angle that the ball will come out of the goal and get in position early.

Focus on accuracy skills and reading the game

In this game there is so much contact with the ball in a time-restricted situation that the players will have to focus on concentrating and reading the opponent's intentions.