With so many professional and amateur football teams around the world, clubs are always looking for new players. Improving your skills and abilities through training can increase your chances of getting spotted by a scout and signed to a team.
Premier Football UK has identified three areas to improve your chances of impressing football scouts.
First touch is vital for a player. It is the moment you touch the ball and everything that happens next depends on the first touch. You can either pass, shoot, or dribble depending on your first touch. You could also lose control and a defensive team could start a counter-attack.
A simple drill to practice first touch is to kick a ball into a wall and control it on the rebound. You can also drop a ball in front of you and when it bounces up, use your foot stop it by stepping on it. These are simple but effective drills.
Weak Foot Ability
It is still common to see professional players who are one-footed. Watching a player continuously move the ball on to their stronger foot even when they can pass on the weaker side is infuriating.
Being confident with using your weaker foot can make you twice as dangerous of a player. It can also allow you to play different positions and the manager won’t be unable to leave you out of the team.
You can use similar drills as mentioned before to practice using your weaker foot.
Close control can make all the difference for a player. It doesn’t matter which position you play, you will find yourself in tight areas with the ball at your feet. It may be in the attacking area or in the defensive third.
Dribbling in and out of cones can help you improve your close control when dribbling. You don’t have to set the cones up in a line but can put them in various designs that simulate dribbling through defenders.
Gareth Bale outlined a cone drill he used to learn how to keep close control when speaking to FourFourTwo:
“Place 14 cones pretty close to each other but at random in a smallish circle, then dribble through them, without the ball touching any of them, before running on goal and shooting.”
“Your close control will need to be at its best to navigate the cones at speed, and then put your head up to pick your target before striking on goal.”