I ran this session on the day of the Champions League Final between Manchester United and Barcelona. Even at 6 and 7 years old, kids get excited about big finals and start taking sides. So for we used drills and games that both clubs have used
Ball Work - El Rondo
Players play 3v1 in a space appropriate to their age and skill. The player in the middle has the job of getting the ball off of the other players by intercepting it as they attempt to pass it to each other. When the central player intercepts the ball, the player who made the pass must become the central player. This is a fast paced game, so ensure one person doesnt spend too much time in the middle chasing the ball. This can also be progressed to 4v2 in a larger area. For the younger players I coach I used an area 20x30 and started the drill off with no tackling.
Here is a video of Barcelona using the Rondo for a warm up
Work in small groups:
Passing to End Zones - One of the challenges with the El Rondo is that players remain fairly static, so to progress this into a directional exercise I added to small end zones to the area. The objective now for the players in possession is to make a run into the end zone to receive a pass. As before if the defender recovers the ball he swaps places with the player who made the pass. We played this game both unopposed and opposed.
Four Goal Game - This game was used as part of a study into small sided games at
Manchester United. With groups split into two teams, this is played as a normal game but with two goals on each end line to target. However given that the session was about passing I decided to varying the games scoring method. To score a goal a team had to knock over a cone on the end line they are attacking. First to knock all four down wins. Then pick them all up and start again.Group Work:
Champions League Final – What better way to end the season and the session on Champions League Final day than to recreate the game. One team Manchester United, the other being Barcelona and the players being their favourite player. For the record our game ended 5-5 and Barca won the penalty shoot out 3-2
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