Defensive Soccer Drills
Defenders are usually the backbone of every soccer team because they possess the grit required to do anything to stop the opponents from scoring.
They typically hang back and protect the goalie from any breakaways and also serve as options for the midfielders during the defensive half.
You may have the best strikers in your team, but if you cannot stop the other team from scoring, you are going to lose.
Defenders need determination and mental toughness to succeed. As a soccer coach, you should start using effective and challenging soccer defense drills in your training sessions if you want to develop an incredibly strong defensive team.
A strong defensive soccer team is significant if you are aiming for your players and team to have long-term or any short-term success. Here are some of the popular soccer defense drills to help your team succeed in soccer.
No Turn 1-on-1 Defensive Soccer Drills
In this drill, one defender tries to keep only one attacker from turning them and scoring a goal.
It develops the ability of a defender to keep an attacker from the other team from turning and scoring. Defenders enhance their footwork, strength, and positioning. An attacker becomes pretty comfortable with his back to goal and his ability to turn and also shoot.
2-on-2 Support Defensive Soccer Drills
Some two defenders will pass the soccer ball out to some two attackers and try to stop them from scoring. In this case, one defender will run directly to one of the attackers getting the pass as the other defender supports and gets ready to pressure the other attacker if the soccer ball is passed.
The purpose of this drill is to develop some individual defending skills and defensive supporting positioning as well. Defenders improve their timing, defensive angles, and footwork. Attackers improve their 1-on-1 dribbling, finishing, and decision-making.
Channel the Attacker Defensive Soccer Drills
In this drill, one player will defend one attacker who tries to dribble via one of the three gates placed behind the defender and beat the defender.
Every gate is worth specified points, and the gate nearest the attacker is worth the least points. Defenders will try to stop the attacker from drooling through the gates carrying the most points or win the ball.
Channel, the attacker, is a competitive 1-on-1 routine that focuses primarily on individual defending, defensive footwork, and closing down speed. The attackers increase their ability to outdo a defending player on the dribble.
Defensive Recovery Runs Soccer Drills
In Defensive recovery runs, one defending player competes against an attacker to make a recovery run towards their set goal with an attacking player trying to beat them to the soccer ball and score. The defenders must prevent the attacking player from scoring a goal, or clear the ball.
Defenders engage in a game-like situation every time the opposing group kicks a long soccer ball, to their striker, over their heads for an opportunity on goal.
The purpose of this drill is to help the defenders boost their footwork, recovery run speed, and readiness while preventing the attacking player from a clear opportunity on goal. Attackers work on their finishing, speed and their ability to evade a defending player.
Change sides – When you are halfway through the defensive recovery runs drill, switch sides so that players can work on the other side of the training field.
Horizontal Challenge Defensive Soccer Drills
One attacking player attempts to drool across the penalty box top with one defending player between them and also the goal.
The defender attempts to block the shot attempt of the attacker, or intercept the ball. The attacking player is free to adjust the direction and pace along the line of the penalty box.
This drill develops defensive agility, timing, and footwork when an attacking player is cutting in to create a better chance of scoring.
Defenders enhance their ability to remain between the goal and the attacker to prevent any goal scoring attempts. Attacking players improve their ability to beat defenders on their inside shoulder to score.
Change field sides – You can switch sides so that the players can work on scoring and defending from both sides.
Good defending is the backbone of every soccer team that wins most of its games. The defense will certainly take pressure off the opposition having to score and also tends to make it easy to win if a soccer team isn't primarily scoring goals to get closer to the opponent. It‘s also the role of the coach to build a level of pride in his team to enjoy locking out the other team.
The soccer defensive drills listed above will help all players on your team to learn how to appropriately defend including the forwards and midfielders and not only defenders exclusively.
Players that defend well can contribute a great deal to a soccer team, and you might even realize that your team is playing soccer more effectively compared to the past because all of you dedicated effort and time to master these soccer defensive drills.
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