Note: This page is meant for U10 and older soccer players but D1 and D2 players may want to look at it too.
Whether you are playing soccer for recreation or to compete at the top levels, learning more soccer skills can help you achieve your goals and simply have more fun playing soccer. For example, it is really fun:
- to trick an opponent with a simple move you've practiced
- to prevent a player from getting past you
- to kick the ball where you want it to go
- to make the right pass accurately and with the right "pace" on the ball
- to move well when you don't have the ball to support the player with the ball and create opportunities
- to work as a team to play "keep-away" or possession from your opponents rather than kick-and-run soccer
- to punt the ball clear to mid-field when no closer teammate is open
- and of course to score a goal.
If your aim is to play at the top levels or to simply have strong soccer skills because it is fun, then you will need to work at it. You need to be aware of important soccer skills and to recognize that practice really can make perfect. Go watch the top teams in our travel league and you'll notice the players are very skilled even at 8 and 9 years old. How did that happen? It's simple, they worked at it! :-) Few players have enough natural talent to play that well without learning useful individual and team skills. Are you practicing and learning as much as your competition? While some young players work very hard at soccer, kids should have a balanced schedule so one goal for the information on this page is to be fairly complete as well as minimal-- a "quality over quantity" approach.
LYS offers many opportunities for player development including clinics, summer camps, fall and spring teams, and Academy Practices. This page is meant to provide a complementary approach to player development through a "checklist of skills" each with additional information explaining them clearly. Given a skills checklist, players can track progress. They can determine which skills they know and which they could learn next. Strive to learn them all, but take comfort in knowing all players are different and find different skills easier to learn. Remember to continue to practice skills you've already learned-- that's very important! For skills you have not learned, go to the skill cards below and click on a skill to get more detailed information about it, often including short video demonstrations which can be easier to learn from than written descriptions and diagrams.
Click below for age-specific skills cards:
U10 Skills Card
U12 Skills Card (coming soon.. meanwhile, do you know all the U10 skills?)
U14 Skills Card (coming soon.. meanwhile, do you know all the U10 skills?)
Feedback very much welcomed from players, parents, coaches, or anyone interested in improving these pages. Please contact asf (at) leominsteryouthsoccer.org .