Proper training of your goalkeepers is of course critical. They need repetitions on the basic fundamental techniques of positioning and defending the goal in all possible game situations. In the video below University of North Carolina Women’s Soccer Goalkeeper Coach, Chris Ducar, takes you through one of the drills he uses to work with his goalkeepers. The Tarheels one of the premier programs in NCAA Womens Soccer. During Coach Ducar’s tenure alone they have one 9 National Championships and 22 overall in the school history.
The drill below is just part of a series of drills designed to help goalkeepers effectively defend. If you are interested in learning more about the DVD this drill came from, click the link Attacking Goalkeeping: Drills, Techniques and Tactics
The YouTube video has sound, so please make sure your sound is on and that you can access the site.
In this drill Coach Ducar is simulating that the offense has flanked the defense (not on a cross) and they have gotten down within the 18. This is a dangerous position and signals the keeper to change position.
In this situation the goalkeeper has three priorities. First step to the near post and take the shot away. Second win any ball that is served between the post and the 6yd line. Third protect against a ball that is cut back to the 12 yd line or bent back to the far post.
In the video he demonstrates a drill to rep the first two priorities. The key teaching points for the keepers first priority are as follows. The goalkeeper must move to a spot an arm’s length away from the near post and one step in front. They must not allow a goal from this position. They should be able to secure the ball, or knock it out, if the shot is taken from here, no matter how hard it is struck.
In the first part of the drill simply have the keeper move from the middle to the proper position near post and defend shots on goal from an offensive player.
If the offense can’t score directly from this position then they might pass the ball to an area between the post and the 6. This is the second priority of the keeper. She must win this ball. How far she covers depends on the distance of the serve, its velocity and her individual ability.
So in this part of the drill the offensive player serves the ball back to the middle to about the 6 where a coach or player is positioned. Should the keeper not win the ball, they are there to put it in. This drill allows the keeper to work on their collapse dive and extension dive. Key teaching point is to go attack the ball. Do not dive backwards.