This practice is designed to provide players with opportunities to work on passing and receiving in a 2v2 directional possession based scenarios.

About the Video

In the video below, Dan will talk you through the structure of the practice, various outcomes and how you can adapt it for your players.

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Practice Overview

Topic: Passing & receiving

No. of Players: 8 – 16

Goalkeepers: N/A

Practice Type: Skill Practice

Offsides: N/A

Pitch Size: 15 x 15

Timing: 15 mins

Age Group: U9+

Interpreting the Diagrams

The key below outlines what the images mean on the diagrams.

If you have questions about the practices, contact the PDP Team or share your views on the Player Development Project Coaching Community.

Key For Diagrams
soccer training diagram


Area set up to accommodate 2+2 v 2+2 game in a square area. The figure shows an example of a team successfully moving possession of the ball from one side of the area to the other, scoring a point.
To challenge the non-verbal communication skills of players, try introducing a ‘mute’ rule when playing the game. Meaning, anytime that a player makes a noise to communicate to another player the game is stopped and possession turned over the opposing team.
In this example we have progressed the activity to include a final pass into a target goal beyond the playing area. Simply, teams now score a point by playing to their teammates on the edge of the playing area and then finishing into the small goal.
This example is demonstrating how we can reduce the challenge point of the activity for the team in possession by allowing them to pass to the opposing team outside players (reds) when in possession of the ball. If the blue team regain possession the outside players (red) that were supporting the yellows in possession now return to playing for the blue team.
In this example we can see how the size of the area can be increased/decreased to lower/raise the challenge point of the activity. This could be marked out in advance for quick game changes or by stopping the game and moving the original game markings.


This practice is designed to provide players with opportunities to practice 2v2 directional possession based scenarios. The attacking players (yellow) aim to receive the ball from a teammate on either side of the playing area and move the ball forwards to the teammate on the opposite side of the playing area. The defenders (blue) aim to win the ball and take the attacking roles with their teammates on the side of the playing area. The small playing area and equal playing numbers are designed to encourage players to outplay their direct opponent individually or in combination with their teammate inside the playing area.


Set up a small sided playing area in the shape of a square. Two teams of four players play a small sided game against each other, with 2 players from each team positioned on opposite sides of the square. If the ball is successfully moved from one end player to another a point is awarded to the attacking team. As this game can be physically demanding it is recommended that games are played in short bouts of 1-2 minutes, at which time the players inside and outside the playing area rotate.

Observations & Interventions

What you might see

  • Players on the outside behaving passively when their team is in possession.

Actions you might take

  • Encourage players on the edge of the game to move to always have a passing line between themselves and the ball.


Is the session too easy?

  • Reduce the size of the playing area
  • Change the match-ups of the 2v2 in the middle

Is the session too hard?

  • Increase the size of the playing area
  • Allow the player/s to use all players on the outside when in possession

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