Small Sided Games

Question to coaches: When organising small sided games are you randomly splitting your players in to teams / games or are you setting up one game amongst one group of equal ability and one game amongst players of a different ability?

Pros & Cons to each; does playing against a better play enhance learning or does it restrict?


About Simon
Grassroots Football Coach

3 Responses to Small Sided Games

  1. Jordan Kerr says:

    I usually split players up. I find it players who play against better players benefit from it. Sometime I put all better players in a team and play against other less better players. U get some weird results at times. But I think splitting them up work well. For me anyway.

  2. Emanuele says:

    I usually split my players keeping in mind:

    1- topic of the session
    2- players’ role/position in the pitch

    Sometimes I need 2-3 players staying in the same team as I want they try what they’ve learnt so they will be able to do the same on match day.

    Let’s say for example session’s topic is “forward runs without the ball”: in this case I’d like the 2 “best” strikers and the 2 “best” midfielder playing together. As kids are very smart the other team’s players know that they are a “weakest” team, so they will play at their best to show me they are good too. If you are able to make kids understand that you will reward effort rather than skills everybody will do their best and improve, and you can really push on those players may have a future in football without be unfair with all the others.

    Of course each team/club/coach is different and you should do what’s best for your kids

  3. Steve Devine says:

    I always split based on ability as I feel that confidence is a major key to kids football if you play best against worse how are they gonna benefit? Too easy for some too hard for others? Set the challenge achievable and you will see quick results….

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