Supporting Runs & Creating Space

Advanced Offensive Soccer Tactics Training and Coaching: My Soccer Supporting Runs and Creating Space Interactive eBook is a team and small group offensive soccer tactics training and coaching guide designed to instruct and educate coaches at all levels develop more effective passing and dribbling options for the player in possession of the ball. Keys to the success to maintaining possession and effective attacks are good passing and receiving skills, proper support, creating space for yourself and your teammates, effective ball movement, and the path and timing of supporting runs.  Click Here.

Supporting Runs and Creating Space Interactive eBook Overview:

Team and Small Group Offensive Soccer Tactics: keeping possession, creating space, fewer intercepted passes, creating better passing options, support runs, diagonal runs, decoy runs, overlapping runs, and how to create more scoring opportunities. This eBook provides detailed descriptions, animations and match video clips demonstrating these concepts. These tactics promote a possession style of play.

Supporting Runs and Creating Space Interactive eBook Chapters:

1. How to improve field vision
2. How to receive the ball under pressure
3. How to protect the ball while dribbling
4. How to create space for yourself
5. Coordinating the movement of Strikers in support of the ball
6. Techniques to avoid becoming off-sides
7. Supporting the player in position of the ball
8. Diagonal Runs
9. Balance in supporting runs
10. How to stretch and create gaps in the defense
11. How to create space for other teammates
12. Basic patterns and combination play
13. How to create numbers in the attack
14. Combination plays In front of the goal
15. Two and three player combination plays
16. Preparation for switching the point of attack
17. Building out of the back
18. 11 V 11 team tactics

General Offensive Soccer Tactics:

Pass and Move‘: This is the most basic soccer team tactic — as soon as the ball has come into possession of the player, they need to be decide quickly whether to pass it or not. If they don’t pass it immediately, they need to move with it; if they do pass it, they again need to move into a new supporting position approximately 45 degrees from the position of the player in possession of the ball. Generally I instruct players to move from the left side to the right side of the player in possession of the ball and vice versa.
This can also be used to mean that once a soccer player has passed the ball he does not remain stationary but moves into a position where he can receive the ball again and give more options to the soccer player in possession.
 Soccer Tactics Video
Give and go‘[or ‘Combination Passing‘]: This is a basic soccer tactic which is essentially the same as ‘pass and move’, and is an essential part of the ‘target man’ style of play. The soccer player in possession of the ball plays a pass to a teammate and then immediately seeks to move into space. If the player who passed the ball can ‘lose’ his defensive marker (either through pace, movement, superior fitness or a lack of awareness on the part of the defender) he could then be free to receive a return pass and advance towards and possibly threaten the goal. When the ball is played by the receiving player immediately back to the first player this is known as a ‘One-Two.’
 Soccer Tactics Video
Switching Fields: Strong Side to Weak Side
Switching the Point of Attack: Using a driven pass across the whole width of the pitch to a soccer player in plenty of space is a very effective way of both relieving pressure and building a fresh attack. The defending team will be required to adjust its positions and this usually creates spaces which can be exploited.
Soccer Tactics Video
The ‘Through Ball’: Using the Space Behind the Opponent’s Defensive Line:
Passes into this area have a number of pros: If an attacking soccer player reaches the pass, taking care to avoid offside, he may get a 1-on-1 challenge with the goalkeeper, or be in an excellent position for a flank attack. Even if a defender reaches the pass first, the outcome could still be good for the attacking team. The defender will face his own goal, which could prompt him to give away a corner kick or a throw-in, make a risky pass to his team’s goalkeeper, or being put under heavy pressure near the corner flag. Typically, teams with faster attackers than the opponent’s defenders will try challenging this space, while the defending team in these cases will want to keep their defenders low when defending in order to give away as little space as possible between the defenders and the goalkeeper.
 Soccer Tactics Video
The Long Through Ball:
This is a long, and usually high, pass from a teams’ own half, over the heads of the other team’s defense. It is intended for the attacking players to chase and it is important that they remain in an onside position until the ball is kicked. The tactic works best with strong and fast forwards who will have a good chance of winning back the ball, taking control over it, and eventually getting a shot on goal.
Using the space between the opponent’s defensive line and midfielder line (‘the hole’): A common build-up of attacks is to pass the ball into the space between the opponent’s defenders and midfielders. Normally, a Striker will receive the ball sideways on or he will have his back to the goal when he receives the pass. He will seek to turn with the ball, or distribute it to a player facing the goal, who optimally also is in front of the opponent’s midfielders – or even on the move into the space behind the opponent’s defenders.
 Soccer Tactics Video
Triangular Movement:
This is a soccer tactic that allows a safe and quick shifting of the offensive flanks while maintaining control of the ball. In a triangular play the ball is passed between three players to form a triangle. The triangle is then shifted to a different position when a new player is added. Many triangles can be created with various combinations of players with the intention of slowly moving the ball forward and never really compromising possession. This tactic works well when trying to gain control in the midfield. However, it can also be used for pure attacking purposes. The effectiveness of this soccer tactic lies in the fact that defenders are unable to quickly ‘adapt’ to the other attacker’s style of play.
 Soccer Tactics Video
Strong Side Overloads:
An offensive attack can pressure the defense on to one side of the pitch by running most of its attackers and midfielders to one side letting a wing player or defender come to the opposite side with little or no coverage. The ball is then crossed or passed to that unmarked player for a free or near free shot
 Soccer Tactics Video
Using a Target Man:
This soccer tactic is useful when the team possesses a quality Striker who has the ability of taking on the whole defense on his own. He will usually occupy two defenders, thus making the defense more vulnerable. Combined with two fast wingers, this soccer tactic may give the 4-man defence potential problems. The team may also benefit from a target man at set pieces. The target man, can use give/go tactics described earlier, can attempt to “knock down” high passes to teammates or can simply try to over power and outmuscle opposition defenders to create scoring opportunities for himself. Alan Shearer, Duncan Ferguson, Chris Sutton, Emmanuel Adebayor, Luca Toni, Emile Heskey, Jan Koller, Christian Benteke, Nikola Žigić, Zlatan Ibrahimović, Peter Crouch, Didier Drogba, Olivier Giroud, and Miroslav Klose are all examples of strikers adept at playing this role.
 Soccer Tactics Video
Moving Into Space: Diagonal Runs:
Moving into free space is one of the most critical skills that soccer players must develop. Attacking soccer players must move off the ball into space to give an advance the maximum chance of success. Passes to space are feasible when there is intelligent movement of players to receive the ball and do something constructive with it. Skilled soccer players are able to find seams between defenders, positioning themselves to receive a pass.
 Soccer Tactics Video
Principles of Play for Soccer:
Penetration – When you are dribbling forward, passing forward, or shooting, you are attempting penetration.
Depth (Support) – Good width and depth provides the player on the ball with all around support so that there are options to play the ball forward, square or back. The more options a player has, the less likely they will lose the ball. Creating depth means spacing out up and down the field.
Mobility – Mobility means movement. Movement is important in the game so that players can create space for themselves or for their teammates. Players without the ball need to keep moving to unbalance the opponent’s defense, and by making “runs” into positions that will create scoring opportunities or create space for the teammates near the ball.
Width – Creating width means spacing out side to side on the field. Good width provides opportunities to attack on either side of the field and up the middle of the field.
Improvisation – When players use their own individual flair to create passing or shooting opportunities to themselves or for teammates. Clever dribbling or passing eliminates defenders and creates openings for attackers.
Finishing – Simply put, finishing is successfully scoring a goal on scoring opportunities. This means shooting when you should shoot, making sure your shots are on goal and not wide nor over the goal, getting the ball past the goal keeper, etc.