5 v 3 Circles - Football Training Session

A possession retention orientated football session, which therefore focusses on support play and passing.

Required Equipment
Equpiment - Football Equipment - Bibs Equipment - Cones Equipment - Goals
x 1 per 8 players x 1 set (at least) x Good supply x None
Area Additional Equipment
Pitch Area X = 40 Yards
Y = 40 Yards
Additional Info None
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5 v 3 Circles
Key Factors for this Football Session
  1. Quality of Pass; Accuracy, Height, Weight and Timing
  2. Supporting Position; Angle and Distance
Starting Position

Split group into two teams. One team has 5 players and one has 3 players. 1 of the 5 players stands inside the inner circle. In the outer circle a 4 v 3 situation arises. Ball begins with one of the overloading players in the larger circle.

Organisation for ths Football Session 

Blue Player ’s must retain possession. They can move anyway inside the larger circle but only one of them is allowed in the smaller. The player in the smaller circle remains unchallenged at all times as the defenders can not enter it.

As the attackers do have a numerical advantage they should look to retain this as much as possible. One way to achieve this is to keep the area as big as possible and do not needlessly compact it. If they do compact it then it makes it easier for the defenders to pressurize the player in possession as the distance they have to cover to apply pressure is reduced. For this reason the players should stay as close to the touchlines as possible. Another good way to ensure the defenders are at a disadvantage is to adopt the correct supporting angle. An easy way to assess whether the correct angle is adopted and whether that ball can passed to them is to imagine there is a piece of string between the two players. If either of the defenders can cut this string with a part of their body then they can intercept the pass, therefore the receiving player must move. In this exercise the man in possession should always have more than two passing options; one to each side of them and where possible one in front of them. If these supporting positions are adopted then it becomes very difficult for the defenders to cut off all the potential passes.

The player in possession must assess the situation around them; their team mates and the defenders. If the defenders are not in a position to pressure the ball they can take a little longer with it at their feet, as passing too early means the defender has less ground to cover to pressure the receiving player. Once the defender(s) is/are close enough and committed then the player in possession should look to pass the ball to a team mate so that it is easily controllable and therefore maintains the advantage the attackers have. In order for this to occur the pass should be correctly weighted, passed to the receiving players’ stronger side and along the floor. They can add some disguise to their passes so that they cloak their true intentions from the defender.

The player receiving the ball should have an open body shape so that they can see the whole area and in particular the ball and the defender. As they are awaiting the pass they should be on the front of their feet ready to reclaim the ball if the pass is a little wayward. Once the ball is played they must get in line and control the ball. They must then get their head up and assess the situation as they are now the player in possession.

For all the other players in the area that are not in sufficient positions to support the man in possession they should look to move as early as possible. The moment the ball is played they should make a run that places them in a position they can receive the ball.

They should also be aware that they do have the luxury of an insurance player (the player in the smaller circle) as if play becomes fast paced or too compact then the ball can be passed into them. They can then keep hold of it for a few seconds to calm the situation down and allow team mates time to adopt the correct supporting positions.

All players should be constantly communicating their positions and intentions. As the area is smaller the attacking players require a quicker reaction time. They must get into position quicker and release the ball quicker. The size of the grid and the amount of immediate pressure all places greater emphasis on the attacking players first touch and their speed of decision making.

Alternate defenders as the attacking team lose possession.

Size of area can be increased or reduced depending on the player’s age and ability. The player in the inner circle can be limited to 1 or 2 touches as the performance level of the players increases

Average: 5 (1 vote)