Preparing Players for a Great Futsal Season
Keith Tozer, the former Head Coach for the U.S.National Men’s Futsal Team for more than 20 years, is America’s leading authority on futsal. Tozer’s new World of Futsal podcast is one of the most downloaded. As the Technical Director of U.S. Youth Futsal, Tozer is dedicated to player development and inspiring the next generation of professional players. In this article, Tozer provides valuable tips on how to successfully prepare to be a great futsal player.
As we start preparing for the upcoming futsal season it is important to understand how important specific futsal technique can be for a player’s individual success, as well as the entire team’s.
To start preparing for the futsal season, I want to recommend that players grab their futsal balls and start practicing futsal specific technical exercises and simple ball mastery techniques.
Becoming proficient at this technique is crucial for a youth player’s futsal development.
It is never to early to start practicing futsal techniques.
Youth futsal players need an understanding of the proper technical applications and the HOW, WHEN and WHY these techniques are crucial for their individual success as well as for the team.
Keith Tozer’s Advice on Futsal Specific Technical Exercises
Youth players must be able to utilize these important futsal techniques in order for their futsal coaches to properly introduce the correct systems of play.
Here are the most important futsal techniques to practice. Grab your futsal ball (which is heavier than a regular soccer ball) and start practicing.
Here is what you need to practice:
- Sole Directional Touch — Moving the ball forward, backward, diagonal and lateral with the sole of your futsal shoe.
- With the toe up and heel towards the court, receive the ball with the sole of the foot — in a direction away from pressure.
- Sole Delay — With the toe up and heel towards the court, receive the ball with the sole of the foot — pulling the ball back, away from pressure which creates space and gives time for teammates to get in position to receive the ball.
- Toe Poke — With the toe up and heel towards the court, we can strike the ball with the toe in order to disguise our shot as well as create a quick release.
- Turn & Face — The ability to utilize the sole of the foot to turn and face a defender. This can be done on the dribble or when receiving a pass from a teammate.
- Scoop — Utilizing the outside, inside or instep to scoop the ball over a defender’s foot or to cut lines of defense.
- Sole Delay and Scoop — With the toe up and heel towards the court, receive the ball with the sole of the foot, pulling the ball back away from pressure and drawing the defender to you, and then scooping the ball over their foot.
You can practice these moves on practically any surface but obviously, a futsal/ basketball court or a gym will provide the best environment for this training. Players can practice these moves on their own or in a small group of players, perhaps even creating a fun and friendly competition on ball control skills.
Good luck in your upcoming futsal games. Remember, the more you have a ball at your feet, the better a player you can become.
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