Moving goal game

moving goal game

moving goal game

Two equal teams.

Select two players to become the “moving goal”.

These players take the ends of a pole, rope or towel and stretch it out as they move around the space.

The other players play a game trying to score in the moving goal.

Coaching Points:

  1. Players should look at the football during shooting motion.
  2. Strike the ball with the instep (laces) with toe pointing down and ankle locked. This will give the players a firm hitting surface.
  3. Hips should face the goal.

Try These Variations:

  1. Add two balls.
  2. Add a second goal. With more goals, players will get more shooting chances and must play with their eyes off the ball. This will present more complex decision making.

Transition soccer

Objective: to practice passing, shooting, dribbling and changing quickly from attack to defence.

Age group: U10s and older.

Set up: Divide your players into teams of three or four. Create a 20 yards by 30 yards area for every two teams. Place a full-size goal at one end and two small goals at the other end.

How to play: One team attacks the big goal and the other team attacks the two smaller goals.

Whenever a goal is scored, the teams change ends. For example, if team A scores in the big goal they try to score their next goal in the two smaller goals and the team that was attacking the smaller goals now attacks the big goal.

Progression: play 3v4 or 3v5 to give your players more problems to solve.

Three big goals

As any top striker will tell you, scoring goals successfully requires a bit more than just good kicking technique.

Many young football players lack confidence in their own ability and need to be actively encouraged to ‘pull the trigger’ when they are within range of the goal.

They also need to be reassured that it doesn’t matter if they miss the target, and that a miss is better than no shot at all.

You can do this by playing the Three BIG Goals soccer coaching game. It is a fast paced and exciting game that football (soccer) players of all ages will enjoy!


To encourage shots on goal.

Age group:

U7 upwards.

Set up:

Create a circular playing area about 40 yards across. Position three big goals (15 yards wide) at equal intervals around the circumference of the circle. Divide your football squad into three teams.

How to play:

The three teams play football in the circle. Teams do not have a goal to defend and can score in any goal. Play the first team to score five goals wins the game – this encourages quick, positive shooting.

If you want to reward efforts on goal, play first to 10 and award a point for a shot and two for a goal.

Four corner shooting game


To improve shooting, goalkeeping and aggressiveness.

Age group:

U6s upwards.

Number of players:

Whole squad divided into two teams of four or five (if you have more than ten players, make four teams and play two games).

Set up:

Create a playing area about 25 yards long by 20 yards wide with a goal at each end.

Divide your squad into two teams (red and blue).

One player from each team becomes the goalkeeper. The rest of the red team wait at their end of the playing area, half at one corner and half at the other.

Arrange the blue team in the same way at the other end.

You stand on the half-way line with a supply of footballs.

How to play:

When you kick a ball into the playing area, the first person at each corner of the field runs in, tries to win the ball and score.

This creates a 2v2 situation.

Play continues until the ball goes out of play or a goal is scored.

When this happens the players on the field quickly get back into their original lines, keepers stay on, and the coach kicks the next ball in for the next four players.

Make it competitive: play until all the balls have been served or a team gets a certain number of goals.

Key soccer coaching tip:

Don’t keep players waiting in lines for too long. If you have more than eight or ten players, consider setting up two games and asking an assistant to run one of the games.

Quick! Shoot!

Objective: To improve shooting skills and fitness.

Age group: U8 upwards.

Number of players: Whole team.

Equipment: Flat cones to mark the playing area, a normal sized goal (or poles), a dozen balls.

Set up: Mark out a playing area about 40 yards long x 20 yards wide. Place a goal on one end line. A marker cone is placed about 15 yards from the centre of the goal for seven year olds, further out for older players. I suggest you put it about 25 yards away from the goal for eleven year olds.

How to play: Divide your players into two teams. Team A stands on the end line about 5 yards away from the left goalpost. Team B stands 5 yards away from the right goalpost.

You stand on the edge of the playing area with about a dozen footballs.

On your signal, the first player in team A runs to the marker cone. At the same time, the first player in team B runs round the left goalpost and becomes the ‘keeper. As the A team player rounds the marker cone, you play a ball into the playing area.

You decide if the player in team A has one touch or more to control the ball and shoot. This will depend on the age of your players and whereabouts in the playing area you serve the ball.

As soon as the first player in team A shoots, the second players in both teams start their runs.

If the shot goes in or is saved, the goalie returns the ball to the coach. If the shot misses the goal the player who missed has to get the ball back to the coach.

Team A has to score as many goals as possible in a given time or until you run out of balls to serve

Team B becomes the shooters when time is up or you run out of balls to serve.

This is a very competitive and popular way to improve your players’ shooting skills!

Goal wars

Objective: to improve dribbling and shooting skills

Age group: U5 upwards.

Number of players:Whole team.

Set up: You need a minimum of one ball per child and preferably more.

Place two goals next to each other on the same line, about five yards apart.

Place a cone (or an adult/coach) about 15 yards in front of the goals, and centered between them.

Place half your footballs next to goal A and half next to goal B (making sure there is at least one ball per child).

How to play: Divide your players into two teams and have each team line up next to a goal each.

Players dribble a football round the cone, then shoot at the opposite goal (for instance, team A shoot at goal B and vice versa).

After several minutes, the whistle blows, and the team with the most balls in “their” goal wins.

Key soccer coaching tips: This game improves ball control and encourages players to keep their heads up while dribbling.

Youngsters will figure out they can score more quickly if they start with a couple of big kicks that get them to the cone, then use more control to approach the goal and take a shot at the goal.”

Shooting practice

Objective: To practice shooting and goalkeeping skills.

Age group: U6s and upwards.

Number of players: Nine (but can easily be adapted for larger numbers).

Set-up: Create a 30×20 yards playing area with a goal on the centre line.

Divide your squad into two teams of four plus a goalkeeper.

Teams stand at each end of the playing area. The goalkeeper stands in the goal.

Note: This game does involve children standing in lines but it’s very fast moving so there shouldn’t be a problem providing you keep the lines short.

How to play:

First, discuss shooting technique.

Ask your players if the goalkeeper would find it easier to save a shot directed at the corners of the goal or the centre. Talk about power v accuracy.

1. Stand on on the centre line and serve a ball for each player in turn to control, then shoot. Vary the serves so the ball goes across the player, away from her and towards her. Also serve the ball so that it goes to either side of the player, play hard passes and serve a bouncing ball.

2. Now give each player a ball. The first player on team A takes one touch to push the ball in front of him then shoots. If the keeper saves the ball, she returns it to the player. If the shooter misses or scores, she retrieves the ball. As soon as the first shot has been dealt with, the keeper turns to face the other team and the process is repeated.

Coaching notes:

Make the game competitive. The team scoring most goals with X number of shots wins.

Watch your players’ first touch (do they push the ball out of their feet?) and shooting technique (head over the ball, non-striking foot next to the ball, good follow-through) and do they use the correct surface (instep (laces) or side of foot).

For more soccer coaching tips and products visit Soccer Coaching Club.

Shoot, score, win!

This game is designed to improve your players’ ability to shoot quickly and accurately. It will also encourage them to follow up on their shots, which will result in your team scoring many more goals this season!

The variation of this soccer coaching game is also a great workout for your goalkeepers.

Experience: any.

Set up:

Divide your squad into two teams of between four and six players. If you have more than 12 players, set up two games.

Create a playing area about 30 yards long and about 20 yards wide.

Place a team behind each end line.

Make a goal in the centre of the playing area with poles or corner flags.

Place a cone between each team and the goal to mark the point at which your players should take their shot

Place a few balls at both ends of the playing area.

How to play:

1. To start the game, team A sends one of its players to be goalkeeper.

2. The first player in team B dribbles a ball (at speed) to the marker cone and shoots. This player follows their shot and shoots again if team A’s goalkeeper drops the ball.

3. Team A’s goalkeeper retrieves the ball and returns to her team.

4. The shooter from team B is now in goal and faces a player from team A who dribbles out and shoots. After taking their shot, this player takes over in goal and so on.

5. The first team to score X number of goals wins.

Key soccer coaching points: impress on your players the need to dribble at speed, shoot quickly and follow their shot. You can, if you wish, further encourage a “finishing” mentality by awarding two goals if a player scores from a fumbled shot.

Also, if the shooter does not follow her shot and get into goal quickly, the opposition will have an open goal to shoot at.

You probably won’t need to, but make sure the next shooter doesn’t wait for the goalkeeper to get ready. They should start to dribble at goal as soon as they have the ball.

Vary the distance to goal and the size of the goal so players can experience success then make it harder by increasing the distance to goal and making the goal smaller.

Encourage players to shoot hard.

Variation: choose one player to be the goalkeeper. The rest of the players take it in turns to dribble and shoot, ie. a player from team A shoots followed by a player from team B in quick succession. The goalkeeper has to work hard: save, turn, save, turn.

Note: although this game involves players waiting in line, the speed of the game means they should only be waiting for a few seconds.