Part 5 of "The Six Steps To Soccer Success"

Score Score Score!

With age sometimes comes wisdom. When I played professionally I never focused on scoring. I instead focused on feeding others the ball and while quite good at it… it was the biggest mistake of my career. Now as a coach I realize how vital it is to develop good finishing skills. Not just for strikers but midfielders and defenders as well. If you don’t score you don’t win and learning how to convert the scoring chances you get or make for yourself is a most critical soccer skill.

Oh Yeah…It’s Fun Too!

Some players seem to have a natural feel around the net. Alan Shearer although nearing retirement and Andy Shevchenko embody all the qualities of the deadly finisher…always on the right spot at the right time …….focused, sure footed, no mistakes. These players make it all look so simple. That is their genius. But these skills don’t come out of a can of Spinach. Instead we can be sure Mssrs. Shearer and Shevchenko spent hours honing their craft.

At Coerver Coaching we try to integrate finishing in many of our drills. As much as possible we want to encourage our players to get used to scoring. To get used to delivering the ball under pressure to making moves to free up shots and to being relentless in pursuit of the goal.

In lesson five of our Six Steps To Success Program. We focus on the single most important thing you can do on the soccer pitch…. score the goal. Yes somebody has to play defense, move the ball up the feel deliver the cross/pass but without someone to finish…all that work is for naught.

Everyone Should Think They Can Score!

The earlier we coaches get it hot wired into our brains that it’s the players on the field who will have to assess their options and make decisions in split seconds that will eventually decide games and scores the better it will be for everyone.

Too early and often we subtly and not so subtly tell players their job. Do this. Do that. Go wide. Stay back. And a couple I must have heard a thousand times if I’ve heard them once at youth games, “Get back!” and “Boot it!”

Finishing is as much an art and an instinct as it is technique. It’s something to be nurtured not ordered and if this applies to forwards and strikers how much more should it apply to midfielders and defenders who seldom is not to score. I think this is a mistake. This takes the edge away from players. An edge needed to play good defense, to make a nice run up the middle, to make a cross into the goal or a strike from the 18 yard marker. If we don’t teach our players to think offensive, to think of getting a goal then we run the risk of having them sit back waiting for the game to come to them.

I personally think one of the reasons we have such a huge drop off in soccer participation is because of this very condition. Players feel restrained and slotted in…no longer able to be free, to be creative, to feel like a part of the greater whole, they stop having fun and leave. Is it right that they should feel this way…defense of course must be played…not everyone can attack all the time.

The truth is I believe that you can not dictate feelings to players or anyone else for that matter. What you can do is try and encourage players to feel as part of an offensive machine and that occasionally circumstances set up for a defender to make an extended run with the ball and to deliver a critical shot and goal…not often but it happens.

The finishing drill we have for your review today is something the entire team can participate in…not just the forwards and midfielders. It’s fun and extremely energetic. I think you are going to like it a lot. Let’s have a look.

Watch the video closely to see the correct form.

The text below should help you with the set up for the drill reviewed in the video. Watch it a couple of times make sure you got it down.

Exercise 9


A 30- by 40- yard area.

A goal and a goalkeeper at each end.

Four teams of two with different color pinneys or bibs.

Coach with a supply of balls at midfield.


The coach throws in a ball at the beginning o the game, after a goal is scored, or when the ball goes out of play. The teams try to score in either goal.

Players can score from anywhere on the field.

When a team scores the number of goals allotted by the coach, it rests. The remaining teams continue to determine the next two winners.

The losing team is eliminated and the three winning teams return to start a new game, scores beginning again at zero.

The game continues until a second team is eliminated. The last two teams play a final game and the first to score the allotted number of goal wins.


Advise players to follow all shots because many goals come from rebounds.

The Pyramid Of Player Development ©

Finishing Well…Harder and Easier Than It Looks!

To be a good finisher, you need good first touch as well as Change of direction or stop and start or feint moves to create time and space to shoot. You must think, act and move quickly and do it all at just the right time …it’s tough…but it can be done…and with practice, defenders to mid fielders too can become successful finishers.

In our next lesson we will expand on the small group play action we used to demonstrate and grow our finishing skills. Soccer is often made of situational games within the game of 2V2, 3V3, 4V4. Players must learn how to read and react instinctively in these situations. Small Group Play is excellent for teaching players to know when and how to support each other and when to go it alone. It incorporates all the foundational skills we have taught you from our skills pyramid. Look for it in your email in the next three days.

For only $49.95 You Could Use All Our Online Drills

We wanted to remind you that we have a terrific starter package. In fact we recommend entire Travel and select teams each have a copy of this DVD series so coaches can quickly help players advance. If you want to improve we know we can help. No one else in soccer offers you a 90 day guarantee of your complete 100% satisfaction or your money back.

No One!

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Remember - You can be watching these videos in 5 minutes and start today to improve your soccer game.

Charlie Cooke


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