Keep ball

Objective: To improve aggressiveness and the ability to shield the ball.

Age group: U6s and upwards.

Number of players: Whole team.

Equipment: Cones to mark out the playing area, bibs and a ball.

Set up: Mark out a 30-yard square. Divide your players into four teams (it doesn’t matter if one has an extra player).

How to play: Each team stands at a corner of the square. Play a ball into the centre of the area and shout “Go!”.

The first player in each team runs out from their corner and tries to get to the ball first. Whoever gets the ball must try to keep possession for five seconds to earn a point for his team before passing the ball to you.

If the ball is stolen or the pass is intercepted, the player stealing the ball should keep it for five seconds before passing to you.

The first team to reach five points wins.

Tip: Very young players will find it difficult to hold onto the ball against three opponents so allow them to either pass to you straight away or play with two teams instead of four.

The older and more skilled the players, the longer they should be able to hold the ball before passing.

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