Long tunnel

This is a very common drill but with an interesting twist that adds a great deal of conditioning to a sometimes slow moving drill. The most commonly used name for this drill is the tunnel drill.

Normally, you would have a group of players (anywhere from 4-8) in each of two lines facing each other (see diagram below).

long tunnel

The first player in line A passes the football to the first player in line B and then sprints to the back of line B. The first player in line B then passes to the first person in line A and then sprints to the back of line A. Very simple drill and somewhat boring.

To increase the number of touches per player and to increase both the intensity and conditioning part of the drill, do the exact same thing in groups of 3. Have two players together and then the third player is 15 yards away. The first person in the group of 2 passes the ball to the third player and then sprints behind her. It ends up being just like a bigger tunnel (and in fact can be done utilizing the same space) but now each player gets every third touch. By keeping the players 15 yards apart, the players will have to really sprint to get to the spot to receive the ball next. Do this drill at full speed for one minute periods and you will find that this conditioning is very relevant to soccer fitness.

long tunnel 2

Other variations on this drill include, playing two touches with the first touch away from pressure (the sprinter runs right at the receiver). This touch can be done first with the inside of the foot and then with the outside of the foot. Also, you can move the players back to 30 yards apart and have them play 2 touch chips to each other. This requires both a great deal of conditioning as well as working on chipping and receiving high balls. Do 5 different variations of this and it takes a mere 10 minutes of the training session (one minute of intense work and one minute of rest per variation) and you will find this is a great example of economical training.