Soccer Ball Control Drills For Beginners To Improve Skills

Ball control is a paramount skill in the captivating realm of soccer. The ability to manipulate the ball with finesse and precision sets exceptional players apart from the rest. Whether you’re an enthusiastic beginner or an aspiring professional, refining your ball control skills is crucial for reaching new heights in the game. This article delves into a variety of top-notch soccer ball control drills. 

These drills encompass various techniques, including dribbling with cones, wall passing, and in-game skills like step overs and chops. Through repetitive practice, focused exercises, and expert guidance, these drills are designed to enhance your touch, agility, and overall control on the field. Regular practice of give-and-go drills can also improve ball control skills.

Embracing these drills will propel you towards soccer mastery, empowering you to navigate the pitch with unparalleled proficiency.

Soccer Ball Control Drills

Using Cones for Dribbling

We recommend using cones into soccer dribbling drills can have a significant impact on a player’s control and agility. To effectively utilize cones in these drills, it’s important to follow a few key steps. 

First, set up the cones in a straight line or zigzag pattern, maintaining equal distances between them. Next, begin dribbling the ball using your preferred foot, focusing on close ball control and maintaining balance. As you navigate through the cones, employ quick touches and changes of direction to enhance your agility. 

To add variety, try different dribbling techniques and footwork, such as inside-outside dribbling. Lastly, track your progress by timing yourself or challenging a teammate to complete the drill faster while maintaining control. 

Regularly monitoring your improvement will help measure your development over time. You can follow our specially made steps for better learning of this skill.

Running More Effectively With The Ball

This is a perfect drill that will help you understand how to control the ball while running on the field. We have briefly designed some steps that will help you in better learning and incorporating. 

  1. Master ball control: Develop a strong first touch to keep the ball close to your feet. Practice receiving and trapping the ball to gain immediate control, enabling quick acceleration.
  2. Maintain balance and body position: Keep your body slightly forward, leaning into the direction you want to go. This helps maintain balance and allows for quick changes in direction while running.
  3. Take shorter, quicker strides: Reduce stride length and increase frequency to maintain control and speed. Shorter strides allow for better control of the ball and faster reaction to changing situations.
  4. Use peripheral vision: Constantly scan the field to be aware of your surroundings. This helps you anticipate the movements of teammates and opponents, enabling you to make informed decisions while running with the ball.
  5. Practice change of direction: Incorporate drills that involve sharp turns, feints, and change of direction. This will improve your agility and ability to evade defenders while maintaining control of the ball.

It is recommended that you should try to be consistent in practicing and maintaining focus on these steps. This way you can significantly improve your proficiency in running with the ball, thereby granting you a competitive edge in the game of soccer.

Trapping and Ball Control 

Trapping and ball control are fundamental skills in soccer that require precision and technique.

  1. Position yourself correctly: Anticipate the ball’s trajectory and adjust your body position accordingly. Get your body behind the ball, creating a stable base and ensuring better control upon contact.
  2. Soften your touch: Use the appropriate surface of your foot or body part to cushion the ball upon impact. Aim for a soft touch to absorb the ball’s momentum, allowing you to gain immediate control.
  3. Focus on eye-ball coordination: Keep your eyes on the ball throughout the process, tracking its movement and adjusting your body accordingly. This helps maintain control and prepares you for the next move.
  4. Practice different techniques: Experiment with various trapping techniques such as using the inside, outside, or sole of your foot. Master each technique to have a range of options for different game situations.
  5. Incorporate game-like scenarios: Replicate game situations during training. Have a teammate pass the ball to you from different angles and speeds, simulating real match conditions. This will help you improve your ability to control the ball under pressure.

Wall Passing

Wall passing is a valuable training exercise in soccer that improves passing accuracy, first touch, and overall ball control. Below you can see some steps that will help you in understanding. 

  1. Find a suitable wall: Choose a wall that provides a consistent rebound and is large enough to accommodate the passes. A flat, solid surface such as a concrete wall works best.
  2. Position yourself correctly: Stand a few yards away from the wall, facing it directly. Maintain a balanced stance with knees slightly bent and body weight evenly distributed.
  3. Execute accurate passes: Pass the ball against the wall using various techniques like inside foot, instep, or outside foot. Focus on accuracy, hitting the desired spot on the wall to ensure a clean return.
  4. Control the rebound: As the ball returns, control it with your first touch. Aim to cushion the ball and redirect it accurately, simulating game situations.
  5. Increase difficulty: Gradually increase the intensity and speed of the passes. Incorporate one-touch passes or alternate between passing with different feet to challenge yourself and improve reaction time.

It is recommended to use this drill in regular practices for better performance.

soccer ball control drills

In Game Ball Control Skills 

The Drag Back

To understand the process and working of the drag back drill, you can see the steps given below. 

  1. Position yourself and approach the ball: Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, facing the direction you want to drag the ball. Approach the ball with controlled speed, keeping your body slightly forward.
  2. Use the sole of your foot: As you reach the ball, place the sole of your foot on top of it. After this with your toes pointing down and heels slightly raised. Apply gentle pressure to grip the ball.
  3. Drag the ball backward: Push the ball backward using the sole of your foot. Pulling it away from the oncoming opponent or towards the direction you want to change. Keep your foot close to the ground for better control.
  4. Change direction and continue: After dragging the ball, swiftly move your body in the opposite direction, creating separation from the opponent. Accelerate away with the ball once you’ve changed direction.

Practicing the drag back will give you more options and control on the soccer field.

Step Over Ball Control Drill

The step over is a fundamental soccer move used to deceive opponents and create space. If you master this skill, you will surely become the most praised player on the field. 

  1. Approach the ball: Approach the ball at a moderate pace, with your body positioned to face the direction you want to fake.
  2. Step over: Lift the foot closest to the ball and swing it over the ball, without making contact. This creates the illusion that you’re going to change direction.
  3. Shift weight and plant foot: As you perform the step over. Try to shift your weight onto the opposite foot and plant it firmly on the ground.
  4. Accelerate or change direction: Once the step over is completed. Quickly accelerate or change direction in the opposite direction, leaving the defender off balance.

Elastico Ball Control Drill

The elastico, also known as the “flip-flap,” is a skillful and deceptive move in soccer used to change direction and confuse opponents. Some steps will show how it can be carried out step wise. 

  1. Approach the ball: Approach the ball at a moderate pace, with your body slightly turned to the direction you want to fake.
  2. Outside-inside motion: Push the ball outward with the outside of your foot. Then quickly snap your foot around the ball to change direction, using the inside of the same foot.
  3. Accelerate or change direction: After completing the elastico, use the burst of speed or change of direction to evade the defender.
  4. Practice and variations: Perfect the elastico by practicing the technique on both feet. Explore variations such as reverse elastico or double elastico to keep opponents guessing.

The elastico requires precise footwork, coordination, and quick thinking to execute effectively.

soccer ball control drills

Fake Shot Sole Roll Soccer Drill

The fake shot sole roll is a deceptive move in soccer. It can be used to trick opponents and create space. We have made up some steps that can help you in understanding of the skill. 

  1. Approach the ball: Approach the ball as if you are going to take a shot on goal or make a strong pass. With your body positioned to face the intended target.
  2. Fake the shot: Wind up your kicking leg as if preparing to strike the ball with power. But at the last moment, pull the leg back and refrain from making contact with the ball. This action deceives defenders into thinking a shot or pass is imminent.
  3. Sole roll: As you fake the shot, quickly roll the ball backward using the sole of your foot. This will move it away from the oncoming defender. This movement creates separation and gives you more time and space.
  4. Change direction: After executing the sole roll, quickly change direction and accelerate away from the defender. Taking advantage of the space created by the fake shot.

We recommend this drill highly as it is a highly effective move to create scoring opportunities and break through tight defensive lines.

The Cruyff Turn Soccer Ball Control Drill

Cruyff turn is a classic and deceptive move in soccer named after the legendary Dutch player Johan Cruyff. 

  1. Approach the ball: Position yourself near the ball, with your body slightly angled and your non-dominant foot slightly behind the ball.
  2. Drag the ball behind: Use the inside of your dominant foot to drag the ball behind your standing leg in a quick and fluid motion. This creates the illusion that you’re going to pass or shoot in one direction.
  3. Turn your body: While dragging the ball behind, quickly pivot your body in the opposite direction. Facing the new direction you want to move towards.
  4. Accelerate away: Once you’ve turned your body. Push the ball forward with the inside or outside of your dominant foot and accelerate in the new direction, leaving the defender behind.

The Cruyff turn requires good coordination, control, and timing. It is an effective move to deceive opponents and create space for yourself or your teammates on the soccer field.

The Stanley Matthews Soccer Ball Control Skill

The Stanley Matthews skill, paying tribute to the renowned English football legend Sir Stanley Matthews, encompasses four essential steps for execution. 

To begin, position yourself with a balanced stance, feet shoulder-width apart, and facing the desired direction. Next, employ the inside of your foot to drag the ball behind your standing leg, simultaneously shielding it from the defender and changing direction. 

As the ball is dragged, swiftly step around your standing leg, creating separation from the defender and retaining possession. With this newfound space, proceed to accelerate and continue your attack, whether through passing, shooting, or dribbling towards the goal. 

The Stanley Matthews skill showcases the player’s control, agility, and timing, acting as a deceptive move to bypass defenders and demonstrate creativity and skill on the soccer field.

The Chop Soccer Ball Control Drills

The chop is a dynamic and effective soccer move used to change direction and beat opponents. 

  1. Approach the ball: Approach the ball with a controlled speed. Keeping your body balanced and your eyes on the target or defender you want to deceive.
  2. Plant foot and chop: Plant your non-dominant foot firmly on the ground next to the ball. With the inside or outside of your dominant foot, strike the ball in a downward diagonal motion. This action creates a sudden change in direction and pace.
  3. Accelerate away: As soon as you’ve chopped the ball. Use your explosive power to quickly accelerate in the new direction, leaving the defender behind.
  4. Maintain control: As you change direction, keep the ball close to your feet and maintain control to prevent the defender from recovering.

Conclusion Soccer Ball Control Drills

In conclusion, soccer ball control drills play a vital role in developing the essential skills required to excel on the field. These drills enhance a player’s touch, coordination, balance, and overall control of the ball. 

From dribbling drills using cones to wall passing exercises, each drill focuses on specific aspects of ball control. By incorporating these drills into regular training routines, players can improve their technique, decision-making, and spatial awareness. 

Consistent practice and repetition are key to mastering ball control. Dedicating time to these drills will undoubtedly elevate your game and make you a more confident and effective player on the soccer field.

That is a wrap! We hope that you found this all in one article helpful. 

(FAQs) Soccer Ball Control Drills

How to maintain ball control in soccer?

To maintain ball control in soccer, focus on keeping your body between the ball and the opponent, using your feet and body to shield and protect the ball. Additionally, practice and improve your dribbling skills, including close ball control, quick changes of direction, and using different surfaces of your feet to manipulate the ball.

How To kick a soccer ball? 

If you want to kick a soccer ball effectively, place your non-kicking foot beside the ball, swing your kicking leg through the ball with your laces or instep, and follow through with your leg to generate power and accuracy. Achieve consistent and controlled kicks by maintaining good balance and practicing proper technique.

how long should I do soccer ball control drills? 

For soccer ball control drills, it’s beneficial to allocate at least 15-30 minutes per session. This allows sufficient time to focus on the drills, repeat them for mastery, and gradually improve your ball control skills.

what is meant by the drill in soccer?

In soccer, a drill refers to a structured practice exercise or activity designed to develop specific skills, techniques, or tactical understanding. It often involves repetitive and focused movements or scenarios aimed at improving individual or team performance on the field.

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