2v2 + Neutral To Targets
Field Setup: Set up a rectangular grid of appropriate size for the number of players and their skill level. Place a target player (red) at each end of the grid outside the playing area, who serves as the objective for the in-possession team to connect with.
Teams: Divide players into two teams of two (green and blue) inside the grid, with one neutral player who plays with the team in possession. The red players at each end of the grid are the target players.
Activity: The in-possession team (green or blue), along with the neutral player, aims to maintain possession and complete a pass to a target player at one end of the pitch. After successfully connecting with a target player, they aim to pass the ball to the target player at the opposite end to score a point. When the defending team intercepts the ball, they become the in-possession team and utilize the neutral player to attempt the same objective.
The focus of this activity is on the principle of penetration. Teams must work to play the ball around the defenders or make penetrating passes between them, incorporating the neutral player to gain a numerical advantage. The use of width and quick ball movement is essential to create gaps in the defense that can be exploited to reach the target players positioned at each end of the pitch.
Encourage the team in possession to use the full width of the pitch to stretch the play and create passing channels. This strategic use of space can pull defenders apart and create opportunities for penetrating passes.
The neutral player is a pivotal part of the strategy. Teams should utilize this player to create overloads, offering an extra passing option to outplay the defenders. The neutral player should be active, constantly offering support and creating triangles to facilitate ball progression.
Stress the importance of quick decision-making. Players should know when to hold the ball and when to release it, choosing the most effective moment to penetrate. They should be aware of their teammates’ positions and the defenders’ stance to maximize the effectiveness of each pass.
Instruct players on the importance of constant movement and intelligent rotation with the neutral player. This movement should be purposeful, aimed at disorienting the defenders and opening up passing lanes for penetration.
Variations & Progressions
Once the ball is played to a target player, teams cannot play back to the same target player; they must find the opposite target player, promoting awareness and forward progression.