Run the gauntlet

Objective: To practise dribbling and passing skills.

Age group: U5s to U9s.

Number of players: Whole team, divided into three teams.

Equipment: Several balls (eight for every 12 players), some flat cones.

Set-up: Mark out a 30×8 yard channel with flat cones.

Team 1 and 2 stand opposite each other on either side of the channel. Team 3 (the red team in the image below) wait at one end of the channel. Players in team 1 and team 3 have a ball each.

How to play: You demonstrate how the side-foot pass works.

How to teach the side-foot pass

The players in teams 1 and 2 begin the game by passing to each other across the channel, using the insides of both feet.

After a few seconds, the first player in team 3 sets off. He has to dribble his ball to the other end of the channel without being hit by one of the passes being made between the players in teams 1 and 2.

Players who manage to get to the far end of the channel without being hit by a ball, score one point for their team.

Once all the players in team 3 have run the gauntlet, change the teams around.

When all the teams have had a go, the team with the most points wins.

Progression: Restrict the players in teams 1 and 2 to two-touch.

Tip: If the players in team 3 are getting hit too often, widen the channel. If they are getting to other end too easily, make the channel narrower.