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Defensive Teaching Activities by Dr. Dina Gentile


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Coach Gentile reviews defensive teaching activities for youth soccer players including recovery runs, when to go to the ball and when to slow down the offensive player.

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Defensive Teaching Activities by Dr. Dina Gentile

  1. 1. Defensive Teaching Activities Coach Dina Gentile
  2. 2. Beat the player to the spot• Recovery Runs• When a player is beat defensively we must prepare them for a positive recovery run.
  3. 3. Beat the player to the spotSet-up: Two lines, coach distributes the ball, first player to the ball is on offense.• There is not a set direction for the players, so decisions need to be quick or game like.• We are concerned with being the first player on the scene, slowing down the offensive player so help can arrive to support.
  4. 4. When to go, when to slow?• All defenders have difficulties when they are playing from a recovery position. Create activities which assist players in understanding the fastest path to defend effectively.• Some players will continue to go right to the player with the ball and get beat easily. We need to ask players to just slow down the play versus over committing.
  5. 5. Decision Makers• We want thinkers. Players will make decisions when an offensive player makes a long touch (that is a signal to go get the ball) or, if a player is very quick, defensive players need to give more space to contain versus trying to tackle the ball.• Give examples, through the games or small sided matches to showcase “best practices” of defending.
  6. 6. What is important?• These two activities assist with creating solid defensive habits.• We need players to understand the ball is the most important “player” on the field.• Players need to be goal side.• First defenders need to provide pressure to the ball in order to slow down the play and give time for teammates to arrive to cover/support.
  7. 7. Elevate the gameon and off the fieldvisit to learn how