Soccer Passing: Technique for Body Position and Ball Placement
Yes, being able to pass to others in soccer is essential. Not just being able to pass from your right foot to your left or vice versa. Though many players feel as though getting an assist is not as important as getting a goal, they could not be further from the truth. Assisting your teammates is integral to winning as a team. Generally speaking, if there is no assist, there can be no goal. Passing can be broken down into two key components: the positioning of your foot/body and where you are passing the ball in relation to your teammate.
Tips on Positioning of Your Foot/Body
-Point your hips toward your partner to ensure an accurate pass. As you become more advanced in passing, you can point your hips in directions that you are not passing to throw off your opponents. However, do not develop this until you have the fundamentals of passing down correctly.
-Most passes should be performed with the inside of your foot and will be 15 yards or less. Pass with the inside of your foot towards your heal because it is harder than the area on the inside of your foot, towards your toes, to ensure that you have powerful passes.
-Don't chop at the ball. Follow through to ensure power, but more importantly, more accuracy.
-Avoid fancy passes, such as with your heal. Though this looks cool, it is usually unsuccessful and leaves your teammates disappointed.
Keys to Passing to a Teammate
-In most circumstances, a "great" pass is leading your partner, so they have to move towards the open space to get the ball. A "good" pass is towards their leading foot. So if they should attack to the right, a "good" pass is directly at his or her right foot. An "okay" pass in this situation would be to his or her left foot. A "bad" pass would be playing it behind them or to further the example, a "bad" pass would be a leading pass to their left, when they need to go to the right.
-However, a pass is not always appropriate, especially near the net. Generally, you are better off taking a shot than making a pass, that will then require a teammate to shoot after they receive the pass or use a first touch to shoot. Often, a good shot either scores or produces a rebound, so getting a shot off increases your chances of the successful outcome of getting the ball into the net.
-KEEP your passes on the ground. For 95% of passes, they should be hard passes on the ground. These are the easiest for your teammate to handle and have the highest probability of success. Passes in the air are often 50/50 balls and require an additional touch to trap the ball to the ground, which takes extra time. Remember, good soccer players are quick soccer players, so taking extra touches takes extra time and makes you much slower.
To become better at passing, practice passing with correct form. Start by practicing with the ball stopped, then progress to where the ball is moving. Start with the inside of your foot towards the heal, then progress to the outside of the foot passes. Lastly, realize soccer is a team sport. It is essential to be able to pass and receive a pass to move your team closer to victory. Being good at passing is a fundamental skill to master on your way to be the very best soccer player.
Check out the book Soccer Passing & Receiving: A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Work with Your Teammates for the correct ways to pass and receive the ball to increase the number of goals you can score.