Soccer is an incredibly physically demanding sport, with players often being required to show both high levels of endurance and razor fast reflexes, all while trying to concentrate on the game around them as well!
That is why it is important to regularly practice the basics and to never stop working on your fitness and ball control.
Here are a few simple soccer training drills which you might like to integrate into your practice sessions in order to make sure you are at your best the next time you step out onto the field for a big soccer competition.
For this drill you will need to set up a straight line of cones or other markers on a soccer field, with a gap of about a metre in between each one.
Next take a ball and dribble it in between the cones in a zigzag motion until you get to the end, then turn around and bring it back.
The key to this one is to do it quickly and for long periods of time, building up your reflexes and improving your ball skills.
To step up the difficulty just move the cones closer together, as this will help improve your ball control and allow you to more easily evade defenders during big games.
High intensity intervals
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a great way to build endurance and simulate the stop-start nature of a real soccer game.
HIIT is all about getting your heart rate up as quickly as possible, so for this one we won't be using a ball. All you need is a decent patch of grass to run on and a stop watch of some kind.
After a five minute warm up, you will alternate between an intensive pace and a relatively gentle run, doing 30 seconds of each.
This one will start to hurt very quickly, but stick in there because it's worth it! Remember that for best results your pace during the faster sections of the run should be flat out, about as fast as you can go.