Soccer drills are a very effective way of enhancing the soccer skills of young players. Different soccer drills focus on different skills. In this post, we will lay out some of the top u7 soccer drills.
This 1v1 exercise is flexible and is meant to enhance the young player’s offensive and defensive skills. If the focus is to train offensive skills, the coach can instruct the attacking players to attack the defending players with speed, agility, and excellent shooting. If the aim is to enhance defensive skills, the focus would be on the defenders to close down the attack quickly and repossess the ball.
- Place a cone approximately 25 yards from the goal.
- Split the players into two teams, each with different jerseys.
- Have one player to start as a goalkeeper.
- One of the teams will be the defending team, and they will start by the goal line. Ensure that they have an adequate supply of balls.
- The other team will be the attackers, and they start at the cone (that is 25 yards away from the goal)
- The first defender starts the play. The defender plays a ball toward the 1st attacker and immediately steps out to defend.
- The two players compete for ball control.
- A point is awarded to the attacking team each time a goal is scored.
- When a goal is scored, or when the defender wins the ball, the second defensive player plays a ball toward the second offensive player and the play continues.
- Each team will play for 5 minutes on each side – each team will attack for 5 minutes and defend for 5 minutes.
- The team that scores the higher number of goals wins.
- After the 10 minutes of play, take a short break and play another round.
- If there is a tie after the two games, play another round to determine the winning team.
Offensive play – the offensive players should attack at high speeds and with agility. They should sprint to get away from and to bypass the defender. They should also shoot on goal at any half-chance.
Defensive play – the defender should close down the play as quickly as the can. They should also push the attacking player to the weak side and break down their play. The defenders should approach the attacking player with speed, slow down when they get close to the attacker, and strategically cover the attacker to force them to the outside.
Angle of Support (Possession Drill)
This drill focuses on teaching angle of support and spacing to young soccer players.
- Using cones, create a 10 X 10 yards grid.
- Split the players into groups of 3.
- Have each of the 3 players positioned at three different corners of the grid. One of the three players should have a ball with them.
- The aim is never to have an unmanned cone adjacent to the player that has the ball.
- For instance, if the exercise begins with the player at cone 1 having the ball, then the other players should be positioned at cones 2 and 4 (these are the cones that are adjacent to the player with the ball).
- The player positioned at cone 1 can pass the ball to either of the players at cones 2 and 4.
- If the cone 1 player passes to cone 2 player, the cone 4 player must quickly move to cone 3 to support the uncovered position.
- Players can pass to either of the two supporting players, and the exercise continues with no opposition.
- Players are required to stay alert and pay attention to the movement of the ball so that they can sprint to the undefended space as quickly as possible.
Players should make quick decisions and move as fast as possible to the unsupported position. The coach should teach defend space and good angle of support.
Trapping with Passive Opposition
This soccer trapping exercise teaches young soccer players trapping and control. It involves a passive defender who forces the receiving player to stay alert and be more aware of the surroundings.
Split the players into groups of 3. In each of the groups, one of the players will be a server and another player will be a receiver and will work on control and trapping. The other player will be the passive defender. The server starts 10 yards from the receiver and the passive defender.
- The server plays a ball toward the receiver.
- The passive defender stands at arms length from the receiver and will try to distract the receiver.
- The passive defender is not required to win ball possession at this point. The server can throw the ball to the chest or thigh of the receiver, or they can serve with their feet towards the feet of the receiving player.
- After the receiver has trapped the ball and has it under control, they play back to the serving player and the process is repeated.
- The coach may allow the defender to apply more pressure for enhanced results.
The coach should guide the young players on how to trap effectively with the chest, thighs and various parts of the foot – inside, outside, instep and sole.
Extreme Tag Soccer Drill
This is a fun exercise that focuses on training dribbling skills for U7 soccer players. It also helps the young players to develop player awareness. This drill makes the young ones to change directions swiftly so they can create space and avoid getting tagged by fellow players.
- Use cones to create a 20 X 20 yards grid – you can vary the size of the grid appropriately depending on the total number of players.
- Each player ought to have a ball.
- The players dribble around within the grid while also trying to avoid getting hand tagged by other players.
- For a tag to be acceptable, it has to be below the player’s knee.
- Each player that makes a successful tag is awarded a point.
- Each tagged player loses a point from their total.
- The player that scores 5 points first wins the round.
- Play a few rounds depending on the time taken to complete each round.
The coach should ensure that the players dribble with their heads up. The players should be instructed to find open spaces, and the coach needs to ensure that the young players don’t leave their balls behind – they should have their ball in close control while dribbling. The coach should encourage the kids to have fun with this drill.
World Cup Soccer Drill
This is a fantastic U7 soccer shooting drill. This exercise creates game-like situations for enhanced results.
Divide the players into 4 groups of 3 players each and a goalkeeper. All the players are positioned inside the penalty box, and players from each group should have alternate jerseys. The coach should ensure that they have an adequate supply of soccer balls near the penalty box.
- The coach serves a ball into the penalty box. Each of the 4 teams plays at the same time trying to outdo the other teams. When a team scores, they sit out the remainder of the round, and they qualify for the next round.
- The last team to score is eliminated from the tournament.
- Round 1 will be 3v9, flowed by 3v6, followed by 3v3. The team that doesn’t score first in the 3v3 is out.
- Round two starts as a 3v6, followed by 3v3. The team that scores last is out.
- Round 3 is a 3v3, and the team that scores 2 goals first is declared the winner.
The coach should guide the kids on good teamwork and quick passes. The coach should encourage the players to take any scoring chances they get and have fun while at it.
Traffic Jam Dribbling Drill
Kids will have fun doing this exercise. This u7 soccer drill is ideal for young players that have some dribbling skills that just need enhancements so they can dribble with their heads up and under pressure caused by congestion from other players.
- Create a 30 X 30 yards grid. You can vary the dimensions depending on the skill level of the players.
- Place cones and flags in the middle of the grid in a random manner.
- Divide the players into 4 equal teams.
- Each team will start at the corners of the grid, and they should have a ball per group.
- The drill begins with the first player from each line racing through the cones and flags with the ball while trying not to touch a cone, flag or another player.
- When a player makes it through the cones and flags, they should dribble at high speeds to the line they face and then pass to the first player in that line.
- The receiving player then repeats what the first player did.
- After a few minutes of play, the two teams facing each other are then merged into one team, and the play continues.
- The team that will have all their players finish first wins the game.
The coach should remind the players to maintain close ball control when dribbling through the traffic area. Also, the players should be instructed to keep their heads up while dribbling.
The u7 soccer drills mentioned here are fun and they focus on different skills. It is important for coaches to select the drills to engage in depending on the skill focus, age, and skill level of the young soccer players.