Tips for clever corner kick set plays

With young players, it’s vital that they know just what to do when it comes to corner kick set plays. Use one of your soccer training sessions to coach these corner tips.

You’ve been there a hundred times. Your team wins a corner – it’s a gift, it should have been a goal kick, but you get the corner. The other team are feeling miffed. “Hey! that was no corner…” The other team are dejected. “It’s unfair!”

So your players take advantage of it, right? Wrong! They kick the ball, no-one moves and the advantage has gone.

You MUST coach your players so that when they win a corner they know EXACTLY what to do. I’m not talking about the coach going red in the face bellowing from the sidelines like a maniac, no-one should need to say anything except maybe your captain who can shout “positions!”

If your corner set-up is right, nine times out of 10 in youth soccer, the ball will end up in the net.

Focus on corner kick set plays

Take a good look at your players and decide who can deliver the right ball. Decide what type of delivery you want, for instance, inswinger, outswinger or just chipped to the near post, and choose who can deliver the ball.

The positioning of your players to some extent will be decided by which type of delivery you want and the soccer skills of the players.

If you have a very tall player who is good in the air, you may want him to stand on the near post to flick the ball on for others to head for goal. You may want to deliver a faster, deeper ball for him to attack directly.

image shows setting up an attacking corner so your players know what to do

  • In the diagram, the corner taker 7 will deliver a longer ball to the far post with his right foot.
  • We have four players looking to attack the ball directly, Nos 4, 5, 6 and 8. They will split their runs attacking different areas, with No 6 spinning away from the ball, arriving late on the back post.
  • No 10 will try to distract the goalkeeper with his presence, trying not to allow him a free run for the ball.
  • No 9 stands on the near post for any ball driven lower than its intended target or as an alternative for the corner taker 7.
  • The use of hand signals by No 7 can alert his team-mates of his intent.
  • No 11 waits on the edge of the box for any balls headed or cleared out while Nos 2 and 3 stay back as markers.

In soccer corner drills, concentrate on these skills:

  • A good delivery.
  • Well-timed runs.
  • Being first to the ball.
  • Hitting the target.

Click here to read some soccer coaching tips for taking short corners.