Attack vs defence

Start & organisation

  • Mark out area with 5 vertical lanes using cones or pancakes
  • Organise teams into attacking and defending units (example shown in diagram; you may need to modify or add/subtract as players)
  • Attackers (yellow) start with the ball as often as possible and attack big goal; defenders try to win the ball and score in mini goals


  • Add or subtract the number of players on the team

Timings: 30-60 minutes
Pitch area: Half a field
Other rules: Offside rule applies


  • Add or subtract the number of players on either team

What to look for

  • Are the attacking team spreading out across the field into 5 lanes?
  • Are the attackers making runs to get free?
  • Are the defending team compressing into 3 lanes around the ball?
  • Are the defenders closing the space for attackers to make runs?

What the coach can do

  • Do a freeze-replay to demonstrate how the team should attack in 5 lanes and defend in 3 lanes
  • Use ‘5 lanes’ and ‘3 lanes’ as mantras to encourage quick movement into these positions as a team