Pirates of the Pugg

John Bychok 628,677 Views Rating 4.27 (384 Reviews)

This soccer dribbling drill is a great soccer drill using a Pugg Goal that can be tweaked to focus on many aspects of the game. For younger players ages 8-11, the primary focus should be on proper dribbling technique in traffic which requires vision and awareness. The coach can also focus on the transition from offense to defense if the ball is lost, or recovering from a tackle and finding safety. Defensively, this allows defenders to steal the ball from attackers and play to a particular goal or target.

Soccer Drill Diagram: Pirates of the Pugg

Pirate Game, Pirates of the Pugg Goal

This drill is an excellent drill for younger players ages 8-11 and focuses on dribbling technique in traffic which requires vision and awareness.
Drill Setup

  1. Build a circle approximately the size of the center circle. The actual size of the circle will vary depending on the age and skill level of the players.
  2. Place a Pugg Goal in the middle of the circle.
  3. All players start in the playing area.
  4. Dedicate 9 players with the ball, and 3 players without a ball are the "Pirates."
Drill Instructions

  1. Instruct the "Pirates" without the ball to defend the players with the balls.
  2. Once the Pirate wins the ball, they attempt to score on the Pugg Goal in the middle of the circle.
  3. If the Pirate scores the goal, that player becomes a Pirate.
  4. Play continues until the last player with the ball wins.
  5. If the pirates have a hard time getting started, the coach can help the pirates at first.
Drill Variations

  • N/A
Drill Coaching Points

Attacking: keep the ball close with head up so the players are aware of defenders and safety areas (space). If the ball is lost, recover quickly and fight to win it back.
Defending: Transition quickly from defense to offensive and stay focused once the ball is won, and find the target.

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