3 Ways to Control a Ball

How is it that time already? For some of you I can imagine lockdown is going slowly, are you still talking to your siblings? I have fallen out with the Cat this week as he would not pass the ball back to me! But, were in it together. Keep smiling, and practising.

There is good news and bad news to report though, good news is the weather has improved, so were back outside, but don’t worry, you can transfer these skills inside if you need to, just don’t smash your mum’s vase please, bad news is…you have got to sit through my bad jokes…AGAIN…just so you can see the skills.

I’ve even added a few clips for those visual learners out there, I know what you’re going to say, don’t worry, I get it all the time…”You remind me of a young Lionel Messi, or a young Cristiano” right, lets crack on with the actual blog, that’s why you’re here right? or are you actually enjoying the blogs? Secretly you are, do not lie, that is why you’re back, admit it, you LOVE the bad jokes.

Let us get to it, here is the first skill:

The foot

The most used part to control the ball in most games, it is SO-SO-SO important to get your first touch right. (I bet you read that as SOS, ha-ha, and you’re probably thinking you need it after this, but you’ve started, and blog rules state that once started you must read on). Danny, blog, skills, concentrate. Come on… “got it.”

The foot…just remember when controlling the ball, you can use your inside, or trap and aerial ball, but what I want to look at this week is controlling a ball from the air, using your laces.

As it drops down you want to relax your knee slightly, so as your foot makes contact with the ball you bring your leg down with the ball at the same time, bend your toes up slightly as if you are hooking the other side of the ball, and try and bring the ball in towards you and down at the same time.

Have a few goes, the ball should finish at or just in front of you, if it is nowhere near then you need to relax your leg a little more. Remember practice doesn’t make perfect, good practice makes perfect. After this touch, remember you want to dribble or pass the ball…or if you’re feeling confident, hit a 30-yard screamer that nestles into the back of the net, I do most nights, then wake up.

Do not worry, I’ve got this blog under “control” this week! Ha-ha, that was that bad it was funny. A little. Okay, not at all, but I’ve typed it now, so its staying in.

The thigh and trap

Moving up the body slightly, most young players always say you control with your knee…. wrong! It is actually your thigh, you want to bring your knee up, so it is straight, and cushion the ball on your thigh, about halfway. After you have nailed it, see if you can do a double thigh control like the video below, and then finish off with a trap on the ball so its truly under control. When I say, ‘finish off with a’, it sounds like I’m writing a recipe blog for food not football: ‘finish off with a drizzle of sauce and fresh basil.’ A great part of the body to control with, as think about how many goals you see scored with a thigh control and then a powerful volley that ripples the back of the net. A thigh control and flick over an opponent’s head, be creative, what can you do with it after you have controlled the ball.

Head, thigh, trap!

To finish off, lets put it in the oven for  20 minutes, I mean…lets get that football back out and put it all together, but with a control using our head, yup, you heard right! Your head is not just for scoring those bullet headers, you can also use it to control. I like to use my hands either side to gage where the ball will fall and make sure the connection and control with the ball is perfect. As you make contact you want to also slowly bring your head/neck down instead of up and away – which you are probably used to.

See if you can control with your head, drop it down onto your thigh and then you foot.

What? You didn’t think the last one was going to be easy, did you? Come on guys, you should know me by now, I’ve even included a bonus round.

Bonus round

**Bonusssss round** (in a competition voice, similar to the x factor guy) can you get the ball from the floor using our chip exercise from blog 1, I hope you read it, all the way up to your head using your foot, then thigh, the shoulder and finally your head, let me know how you get on?

And to answer your question, “yes” that is a Mitre hoody in the video, yes, it is comfy. Model in the video is 6ft, wearing a medium. (He should have definitely got a large, too much cake in lockdown).

Keep safe, stay home, and lets practice…the Mitre way.

Danny, DF Sports Coaching
FACEBOOK: DF sports coaching UK

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