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Medium Mixed Bag

Objective:

  • To encourage young players to think more about using the width of the field.

  • To develop crossing skills and to look to finish (or defend) attacks from the flanks.

Target:

  • To generate a good, fun practice, but don't forget to keep the score.

Organization

  • This is the progression from the Mini-Mixed Bag.

  • Mark in an area 36 (two penalty areas long) by 30 yards wide and then further extend the width with a 6-yard channel on either side.

  • Don't be tempted to us the full width of the penalty box (44 yards) as this may be too wide at this age.

  • Put in a half way line, but not in the channel.

  • Play 2 Attackers vs. 1 Defender and a goalkeeper in each half.

  • There are two neutral "crossers" of the ball - one on each flank.

  • Keep a supply of balls in each net.

  • Goalkeeper at one end starts by throwing the ball out to one of the "crossers" (wingers).

  • The wingers play a cross in towards the goal.

  • If the defenders or the goalkeeper gets the ball they play out to one of the two wingers and the attack goes the other way.

  • Rotate all players at intervals through all positions.

  • Use the offside law to prevent attackers standing in front of the goalkeeper.

  • If possible, organize three teams of 4 (see Progressions for "How to Organize").

 

Teaching

  • Encourage an accurate thrown ball from the keeper to the winger.

  • Wingers should aim to cross the ball towards the far post with a hard driven pass.

  • The wingers should also aim the ball to split the difference with the cross in between the defender and the goalkeeper.

  • Attackers should go away from the crosser and then come in fast as the ball is played in (see Corner Shot).

  • Defender and goalkeeper have to work well together as the defender cannot man-mark two attackers.

  • Goalkeeper should take charge and organize the defenders.

Progressions

U12 Progressions

  • Is the progression from Mini Mixed Bag.

  • Adjust the width of the middle area to suit the abilities of young players, as it is imperative the crossers/wingers are successful when crossing the ball.

  • Eventually, when they get older (15/16 years of age), they should be able to cope with a full Mixed Bag using the full width of the field.