In soccer the goalkeeper is a vital position, so you want to be switched on and know how to perform your best to avoid the opposing team scoring.
You are the last line of defence, so the trick to being a good goalkeeper is to be prepared and confident.
You have a leading role as your position allows you to observe the whole field. This means you need to talk to your team to plan how they should defend or attack.
Communication is essential when your teammates are closer to the goal. When needed, call out “mine” or “yours” to ensure two players are not defending the same player, and leaving an area open for the opposing team to score.
Look bigger than you are
To place pressure on your opponent, keep your arms out wide to make the goal look smaller. This will make the shooter hesitate where they should aim, and also makes you more prepared to block a goal with your hands.
Stay on your toes and have your hands open to be ready for an incoming shot. Otherwise, the opposing team can take advantage of the time it takes you to reach for the ball.
Kicking and throwing
Give time to practice kicking and throwing, preparing for multiple distributions in a game. This will help with accuracy and benefit your team when they are on the offensive.
Note: if you feel your throws aren’t big enough, take some time to strengthen your arms at training.
To put these tips into practice here is a drill that can help:
2 x goalkeepers
1 x coach or player
1 x ladder
2 x cones
5+ soccer balls
Set up a ladder on the ground (or a line of cones).
At the end of the ladder, place 2 cones two meters apart, they should be around 10 meters perpendicular from the end of the ladder. The cones will act as a small goal.
Have 1 of the goalkeepers stand in front of the small goal.
The other goalkeeper stands at the start of the ladder.
The coach or player stands 5 meters from the other end of the ladder with several soccer balls.
The coach or player gives a command. Then the goalkeeper at the start of the ladder runs forward, taking short, sharp steps in each of the ladder holes. Both feet need to touch the ground in each square.
When the goalkeeper reaches the end of the ladder, the coach/player throws or kicks the ball (change it up each time). The goalkeeper then needs to gather, catch or jump for the ball.
With the ball in hand, they must turn to the other goalkeeper in the small goal and roll the ball fast between the two cones.
Then they sprint back to the start of the ladder.
Repeat about five times, then switch goalkeepers.
Learn more skills and drills to be at the top of your game at a soccer camp!