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Using my pressure grids Passive Grids, Active (Player) Pressure Grids

One aspect of coaching that I have tried to impart in this book is a new approach to the way you structure and think about your coaching sessions. I always liked to put players in a simulated situation as close to what they should expect in a soccer match and I have put pressure points in most of my grids.  To achieve this I use other players, markers and training posts to increase pressure on players.

Passive Pressure (Markers and Posts)

Lets start with a simple warm up The Passing Square (W002 Passing The Passing Square.doc)

Here we have a 20 x 20 square with markers on each corner. 

1. Players have one ball and pass the ball inside the grid. OK so you can get them to pass with the wrong foot, use inside only or outside of boot passes or even chip passes, but there is NO PRESSURE on the players apart from the ball going outside the grid.



2. So lets add some pressure, put in two players holding a bib as defenders and they can intercept any pass (no tackling) and will change with the player making a poor pass or ball passed out of the grid. Players now have to think about the passes and need to move to better angles.


3. So you will find that players will double up passing back and forth to draw a defender but we can increase this pressure with another pressure element. What if after a pass a player must touch a corner marker BEFORE playing the ball again!


Now player 1, players 2 and 3 must be now moving to touch a marker BEFORE playing the ball again. We have added elements of speed, thinking and movement, plus putting all attacking players under pressure.

4. We now add another pressure element for senior or semi-pro teams, put a post outside of the grid and players must run around or touch the post after they pass a ball, you can decide if you want 1, 2 or more posts.

Next we look at player pressure grids


Players will become more productive if they are working under pressure and if you use the grids several times you will see players moving to combat the increased pressure load against an opposing player.

You will find players moving quicker to get to 'run around posts' or 'touch markers' that have been set up to add  pressure points to the grids. I cannot support those boring static grids or short sprint to a marker and back, so I encourage you to try my method of pressure coaching and see if your players increase their sprinting ability when placed in a one on one race to a ball.

Player Pressure Grids

Using grid B001 Attacking Pressure Shooting.doc and see how the elements of fitness are used in the pressure grid, yet without the players being aware of it,  they are sprinting and running with an objective in mind, concentrating on their roles and enjoying themselves. Compare this to a sprinting session to markers - players will run the same distance but in B001 they will develop better ball skills, improve their fitness and run faster!

Here is the set up, attacking player runs towards goal (around a pressure post) and shoot when possible, defenders make the first pass then run in and try to defend (after running around their pressure pole). Set up the following grid. Put in a goalkeeper, attackers on the center (blue marker) near the half way line and defenders with a ball next to the goal line (blue marker)




1. Start - The defender dribbles in and passes through the mini yellow goal towards the post opposite



The attacker takes off as soon as the ball is passed and runs around a PRESSURE POST to dribble the ball.

The defender takes off around the defenders pressure post and sprints into the grid.

Pressure - At some point in the middle the attacker will get a shot on goal or the defender will tackle the ball.


Players swap roles after each run, but the pressure that is applied forces the players to move at speed and purpose and work very hard to achieve a result.

You can adjust the posts to favour attacker or defender and your player fitness but this is what I mean by applying pressure to my grids. 90% of the Ball Skills and Match Practice grids include pressure.

2. Here is the grid which can be set up on either side of the pitch to encourage wrong foot play or variations

(i.e. Defender can chip pass the ball towards the attackers post).


The actual grid B001 Attacking Pressure Shooting.doc



Here is the full session using pressure grids

below is a sample set for a 70 minute session using various grids.

A Coaching Session Sample (7 Grids & 1 Planner)

Of course not all these grids have pressure elements, because some are designed for warming up players or just having fun and if you and your players can have fun whilst using these grids then everyone will end up satisfied, especially you, because if your sessions are well structure, include lots of ball work and are enjoyable, you will attract more players to your club. The main purpose of this book is to give you a starting point for designing your own week by week coaching sessions.

This Soccer Coaching Handbook is FREE to all users

subject to recognition of the author.

Session 27 A sample 1 of 104

Why not download your first coaching session get started immediately

click on this link for a ready to use session

Download Session 27 A Coaching Session Sample (7 Grids & 1 Planner)

Warm Up: W002 Passing The Passing Square.doc

Warm Up Fitness: A006 Speed Passing Fitness Run.doc

Ball Skills: B001 Attacking Pressure Shooting.doc

Ball Skills Specific: B006 Shooting 1 v 1 Pressure.doc

Match Practice: M009 Attacking Working Goal Line Crosses.doc

Game: G002 Man on Man Game.doc

Warm Down: W007 Warm Down Chart.doc


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Sample of Grids G182.gif

Below is a sample of 26 sessions of a Level 2 Youth or Ladies or Amateur Club Team, to download and print out including the session sheet planner

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Below click on each week by week for a Level 3 sample of 26 weeks ready to use coaching sessions

Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Week 5 Week 6 Week 7 Week 8

Week 9 Week 10 Week 11 Week 12 Week 13


Week 14 Week 15 Week 16 Week 17 Week 18 Week 19

Week 20 Week 21 Week 22 Week 23 Week 24 Week 25 Week 26


I strongly suggest that you download the planning sheets from Coaching Tools, then save grids as you need them and put them into a folder. Create your sessions using grids from either Warm Up, Ball Skills, Match Practice, Fun, Set Pieces, Fitness or Games grids.

Assessments ball Ball Skillsball Coaching Tools ball Fitnessball Fun ball Gamesball Homeball Match Practiceball Sessions ball Set Pieces ball Warm Ups

Original produced in 1996 copyright 1997 and 2014


There are four pre-prepared session spreadsheets, these have been created for the four levels of skill and contain 26 sessions in each sample, ready to print out. Pick the level that you are coaching and download the completed spreadsheet, this will give you a start to your coaching. As you progress you can create more sessions using the same spreadsheet or make a copy then select new or variations from over 200 grids, or drills listed in the spreadsheet. You can then print each grid ready to use in your own sessions.

Sessions Level

Suitable For




Is suitable for Junior players up to about 11 and includes basic skill development and fun routines with lots of action and ball work.

A sample of 26 weekly sessions for Juniors is included (make a copy of the sample if you wish to make changes) and you can add more grids from other sections if your skill levels improve.

Level 1 Sample



Is suitable for Youth up to about Under 16's and Women’s Teams and concentrates on Developing passing and dribbling and introduction to the skill techniques

A sample of 26 weekly sessions for Level 2 is included (make a copy of the sample if you wish to make changes) and you can mix and match with other grids from higher or lower levels, it is also an opportunity to start using the development elements in each grid.

Level 2 Sample



Is suitable for Club Men’s Teams and Premier Ladies teams it it the broadest scope of skill development and brings in Match situations, player roles and high level ball control and development of tactics including set pieces

A sample of 26 weekly sessions for Club men and women teams is included (make a copy of the sample if you wish to make changes) and you should now be looking at the Phase ii sections of these grids or move onto some Level 4 grids.

Level 3 Sample



Is suitable for Premier or Semi-Pro Teams at club or semi pro club level it concentrates on player roles extreme fitness and testing along with serious ball work

A sample of 26 weekly sessions for Semi-Pro teams is included , (make a copy of the sample if you wish to make changes) and you have access to other levels if you wish to develop your own area of need, i.e. you can select grids that concentrate of Forwards, Defence or Midfield or on crossing, shooting etc. Most of the grids start at Phase ii of previous grids.

Level 4 Sample



Email Peter Faulks

ballAssessments ball Ball Skillsball Coaching Tools ball Fitnessball Fun ball Gamesball Homeball Match Practiceball Sessions ball Set Pieces ball Warm Upsball

ball Attacking ball Crossing ball Defending ball Dribbling ball Goalkeeping ball Midfield ball Tackling ball

ball Junior Sessions ball Youth Ladies Sessions ball Amateur Club Sessions ball Sem-Pro Sessionsball


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©  Copyright    1997 Normal copyright rules apply to this publication unless stated

Note the copyright is relinquished by the author for all soccer coaches subject to recognition of the author or web site

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Last updated 24 March 2017