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How To Perfect Your Passing Technique

There are lots of ways to pass the ball – with the outside of the foot, in the air, driven along the ground, even backwards using the heel – but the easiest and most accurate, whether straight to a teammate or into space for them to run onto, is the sidefoot pass.

Tips on side-foot soccer passing technique

  • Use the inside of the foot – that’s the area from the base of the big toe to the central area of the heel, under the ankle bone.

  • Kick foot at right angles to the ball.

  • Belly button should be facing the player receiving the pass.

  • Non-kicking foot alongside the ball.

  • Knee and ankle joints held firm.

  • Body over the ball.

  • Head steady, eyes on the ball.

  • Use the arms to keep balanced.

  • Hit through the ball’s horizontal mid-line – that way it will keep low.

  • Kicking foot follows through towards the target.

But getting the technique right isn’t the end of the story – there are two other skills players should work on perfecting: timing and weight.

1. Timing tips

Get this wrong, for example, pass too early or too late, and the momentum of a move can stall. For example, a forward pass before a striker is ready to make their run could run harmlessly out of play, while delaying a pass too long can give defenders time to block off space and the passing angle, or mean your striker strays offside.

2. The ‘weight’ or power of a pass

Similarly, get the weight wrong, for instance, too heavy or too light, and that can also mean the end of an attack. Too heavy and a teammate could have trouble controlling the ball, while too light and the ball might not have the pace to reach the teammate, allowing a defender to intercept it.


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