10 Soccer Passing Drills for Great Ball Movement
Passing is a hugely important skill in modern football, no matter what position you play in. There are lots of ways you can improve your passing ability and the following ten drills are some of the best. These drills will cover a range of passing scenarios to provide a well-rounded set of exercises to develop your passing ability.
Top 10 Soccer Passing Drills
For this drill, you will need a minimum of three players and one ball. Have one player stand in the middle of the other two. This player will receive a pass, turn and pass to the other player before repeating the process in reverse.
This drill can be made more complex with additional passers and multiple footballs. It is great for improving your first touch and quick turning.
2. Pass and Move
This drill has a similar set up to the last but with the exception of the middle pivot. Instead, have players line up facing each other at a distance of at least five meters apart. The starting player passes the ball across to the player they are facing before running to join the back of the opposite line. This continues with the player receiving the ball passing to the person now at the front of the opposite line.
Moving after passing is a good habit to get into that will translate well to real match situations.
3. Pass and Move v2
As the name suggests, this follows a very similar pattern to the above drill. The major difference here is the direction of the movement. After passing off the ball, instead of following its path, run to join a third line at an equal distance from the original lines to the left or right. This movement more closely mimics the sort of run you would make after passing the ball.
This drill focuses on keeping possession in a circle formation with pressing players in the middle. For a more detailed explanation, click here.
5. Grid Pass
Set up four cones around a player so that they are standing in a box. Each player should have own box marked out at an equal distance from one another. They must then pass a ball to each other, making sure to aim for feet. The player receiving must take a good first touch to keep the ball within the grid.
As players get more confident with their ball control, the grid can be made smaller. Grid passing is great for precise passing and good ball control.
6. Lobbed Grid Pass
Use exactly the same set up as the previous drill. The only difference here is the type of pass. The lobbed grid pass drill focuses on lifting the ball off the ground, attempting to land it within the grid. This is best achieved with longer distances between grids and is a good way to mimic switching the ball in a real game scenario.
7. Guard the Castle
For this drill you will need two or three players and two balls. One player is charged with guarding the castle. This means they have to stop the other players from knocking a ball off a cone by passing the second ball into it. The attackers must pass their way around the defender to create a good angle and attempt to knock the ball off the cone.
This game encourages patience and quick passing in order to create the opportunity to knock down the ‘castle’.
This is fairly self-explanatory. Players can practise their crossing/long passing by taking corners. This can be incorporated with a shooting drill for the players in the middle.
Corner taking will improve curved and whipped passing.
9. One Touch, Two Teams
Assign players into two equal teams. The objective is to keep the ball from the other team but each player may only take one touch. This forces players to keep moving and places the emphasis on accurate passes. Players who can think ahead and make clever runs will excel at the drill.
10. Through the Gate
Passing isn’t a solo activity but it can be practised on your own. All you need for this drill is a ball and a cone/another target. Preferably you have two cones and can form a small gate for the player to pass through. The gate can be made wider or narrower and moved closer or further away depending on the difficult level desired.
This drill is perfect for improving pass precision and doesn’t rush passes.
Soccer Passing Drills FAQs
Is passing important in football?
Yes, passing is important in football, especially in the modern game. It is one of the most valuable skills to learn.
How can I improve my passing?
The above article has several useful drills that will help you improve your passing ability.
Are there different types of passing?
Yes, there are lots of different types including, short passes into feet, lobbed passes or crosses, and through balls.
Do goalkeepers need to know how to pass?
It may not be the most important skill for a goalkeeper, but passing is still very useful and shouldn’t be neglected.