Once the Striker has perfected his shooting mechanics with a stationary ball and rolling ball, the level of difficultly needs to be increased. I’ve trained Strikers separately from other players. To hone a Strikers shooting technique I’ve created a series of shooting drills that will be displayed in my Striker Shooting Drills Blog series. The following video demonstrates one of my Striker Training Shooting Drills I have utilized for many seasons. Ideally, Strikers should take no less than 100 quality shots per training session, with a minimal lag time between shooting repetitions. Except as indicated, all shots should be one touch.
This video demonstrates a drill which allows high repetition for both a left foot and right foot shot. I am demonstrating just two of the variations in this video. Four cones are used to define the path from the left foot shot to the right foot shot. In the first instance, Player 1 follows a curved path in front of the server and receives a pass to the outside of his left foot. The pass should be played at the same pace as the Striker is running – never slower or faster than the Striker can run. The Striker can protect the ball from a defender when the ball is played so that it arrives alongside the Striker, and not a several feet ahead or behind him. The Striker should shoot the ball first time and then follow through before turning and following the curved path around the cones for the right foot shot. Typically, Player 1 would receive the same service on each side. Note the limitations of the animation software do not permit the proper timing of the right foot shot variation. In the second variation demonstration, the server plays the ball in the air just ahead of Player 1 for a full volley shot out of the air. Note Player 1 should not have to slow down or stop to shoot the ball as shown in the animation. When properly executed, Player 1 is spiriting when he arrives for either the right foot or left foot shot. The variations of this drill include: 1.) bouncing service with a half-volley shot, 2.) two-touch full volley shot after preparing the ball with the thigh, chest or head. Player should not break stride while preparing the ball or shooting the ball. The preparation of the ball for the shot as well as the shot should be incorporated into be one continuous movement while the Striker is moving to the goal – no stopping to prepare the ball or letting it drop to the ground! 3.) A variation of the foregoing (2) would be to add an extra touch to switch the ball off the right or left foot to the other foot for a full-volley shot while continuing to move, 4) changing the service angles, distance from the server (Striker forced to deal with services arriving at higher speed), and distance from the goal, 5) Striker required to jump over an obstacle immediately before receiving the pass or taking the shot. Players with a high technical ability need to be challenged with good quality, but very challenging services. I would either throw or punt the services to Strikers from distances ranging from 20 to 40 yards (no floaters or tosses from two or three yards away, but hard, low arc, driven services!)