F4. Finishing – Shooting 1

F4. Finishing – Shooting 1
1hr 45min
Quote of the Session:
Warm Up/Agility 10 mins
Technical/Tactical 1 20 mins
Shot Followed by 1v1
​The Set-up

Divide team into two groups (Red &White) with each group having all players in a line with balls with the exception of one player that stands approximately 5 yards away and facing his/her group without a ball. An additional disc is placed at the top of the penalty box arc.

The Game

When the coach (or the keeper) calls go. The first player in each line passes the ball to his/her teammate. The white player prepares the ball and shoots as quickly as he can. The red player receives the ball and immediately dribbles around the disc at the top of the arc and takes on the white player (shooter) in a “live 1v1” to goal. The passers now move forward to the open disc and face their line.

Coaching Points

  •  If possible, the player should look up to see the position of the goalkeeper, choosing a side to shoot the ball. 
  • Approach the ball. 
  • Plant the support foot beside or slightly ahead of the ball, which helps to keep the shot low. 
  • Keep the head steady and eyes on the ball. 
  • Make proper contact with the ball. 
  • Ankle of kicking foot is locked and the toe is pointed down if shooting with instep. 
  • Hips and knee of kicking foot are pointed in the direction of the shot. 
  • Follow through to keep the ball low (weight going forward, landing on the kicking foot).
Rotation options

  • switch lines after every turn
  • teams switch roles after every 4 minutes (make it a competition by keeping score)


Players in line have the ball in their hands and toss the ball to their teammate. This will increase the difficulty level of the reception.

Technical/Tactical 45 mins
US Youth Finishing Exercise

​The Set-up

  • On a 36x 30 yard field (double penalty box length) 
  • Divide the group into two equal teams. 
  • Create three 5×5 boxes as pictured. 
  • Have the two lines directly across from one another facing the central square.

Balls should begin with the goalkeepers.

This exercise works best with 10 to 12 players.
The Exercise

When the coach yells Go! The first player in each line sprints into the square and “opens up” into a wide position in their lower right hand box.

Note: When the player moves from the central square to the lower corner square, they should begin to position their body in a way that they can begin to see the field.

The goalkeeper distributes the ball firmly along the ground to the players “front foot”.

The player now dribbles the ball at speed toward the opposite goal and takes a shot. The shot should be taken prior to the player being in line with the lower line of the central box.

Coaching Points


  • Proper movement when “opening up”
  • Receiving
  • Running at speed
  • Finishing
  • Goal keeper distribution
  • Shot stopping
Progression below

The Set up

Same, but now all the players in line have a ball at their feet

The Exercise

Same as the initial exercise, but now the players must dribble into the central square, perform a sharp turn, pass the ball to the keeper prior to “opening up”.

This will force the keeper to deal with a back pass and distribute with their feet.

Additional Coaching point: As the player moves from the central to the lower corner box and the goalkeeper is playing them the ball, ask that they look over their shoulder to the goal that they are going to be attacking. “Can you take a look at the space you’re looking to attack next before the ball arrives?”

This is a great habit for the player to develop!

Small Sided Game 30 mins

5 v 5 Distance Shooting Game


  • Two teams of 5 including the GKs
  • Playing field of 35x25m., divided into thirds.
  • Strikers restricted to A1/3.
  • One goal at each end.
  • Goals can only be scored directly from the middle third of the field.
  • All balls in the goals.
  • Play starts with the GK.
Coaching Points

  • Be composed.
  • Look at goal on approach.
  • Square hips toward goal.
  • Look at ball & head steady.
  • Long step and stretch toe down, lock ankle.
  • Drive through the middle of the ball with instep.
  • Shoot low & to the side of the GK

  1. The game begins when the GK rolls the ball out to one of the red players. The reds then inter-pass in an effort to get a player into a shooting position in the middle third. Strikers must stay in the Attacking 1/3 of the field but they can only score from rebounds. All other players can roam freely. The white team must try and win the ball so that they can attack and score on the reds in the same manner. Normal rules of soccer with the exception that the ball must be “kicked-in” when the ball goes out over the touch line. Any balls that go out of play behind the goal are restarted by the goalkeeper rolling the ball to one of his/her players.
  2. Progression: All restrictions are removed for the last 5-10 minutes and normal game of soccer is played, see below. 
  • Two teams with goalkeepers.
  • Playing field of 40x20m
  • One goal at each end
Regular play with minimal coach intervention.

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