Slide tackle soccer drill session

Your young soccer players will love practising these slide-tackle soccer drills. But make sure you tell them that usually the slide tackle is a last-resort method to stop a player with the ball advancing on goal and it buys some time for your team to reorganise in defence or regain possession of the ball.

A slide-tackle soccer drill session is all about:

  • Last resort defending.

  • Knocking the ball out of play.
  • Winning back the ball. 

Soccer drill to get young players using a slide tackle
What players need to think about in this drill

  • Approach from the side.

  • Wait until the attacker separates from ball.
  • Use the leg furthest from ball.
  • Tuck the other leg underneath backside.
  • Slide on outer thigh/hip.
  • Tackle with shoelaces.
  • Contact centre to top half of the ball.
  • “Hook” the ball in opposite direction so keeping possession, or knock it out of play.

Soccer drill set up

In this drill, set up a few coned-off areas around 10 x 20 yards and get your players into pairs. They need a ball to use for the tackling.

What players have to do in the drill

  • Each player leaves a short distance between themselves and a stationary ball, before running to it and performing a slide tackle.

  • In pairs, players take it in turns to roll or pass the ball forward to themselves, chase after it and attempt a slide tackle.
  • To progress the soccer drill both players stand at one end of the grid. The first player, acting as an attacker, dribbles forward steadily at half speed so they can be caught, before the second player, the defender, begins their run and slide tackle.
  • Swap roles and have players working on slide tackling with their left and right foot.

Put the drill into a game situation

  • Play 1v1 in in the grid but add end zones.

  • The ball starts in the centre with both players at one end of the grid.
  • Play begins with both players running to the ball.
  • Player A attacks the end zone opposite, while player B attacks the end zone both players started in.
  • Points can be scored by dribbling into their respective end zones or for well-executed slide tackles.
  • The ball is placed in the centre following a successful dribble, but players should alternate ends for the re-start. Roll-ins or dribble-ins can replace throw-ins.

Click here for more soccer drills and coaching tips on the slide tackle.