4v4 Zone Game

This 4v4 possession soccer drill helps players keep possession for a purpose with short and long passing combinations. This drill also allows one to focus on defensive transition by quickly close down space and eliminate passing lanes.

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4v4 Zone Game - 4 vs. 4 Soccer Drills


  1. Create a grid that is approximately 24 x 15 yards.
  2. Split the grid into three 8 x 15 zones (increase the size of the area if more players are involved or low skill level). 
  3. Divide the players into three teams of 4. 
  4. The coaches may want to keep the defenders, midfielders, and attackers on the same team, as this allows the group to work together as a unit. 
  5. Place each group of four players in each zone.
  6. The two teams of 4 in the end zones are attackers.
  7. The 4 players in the middle zone are defenders and split into 2 teams of 2. 
    • One pair is tasked to close down and defend one end zone
    • The other pair defends the other end zone. 
    • When not defending a particular area, the defenders should position themselves in the middle zone to intercept any penetrating pass from making it to the outside zone.


  1. The play begins when the coach plays a ball into the attackers in one of the end zones. 
  2. The four offensive players in this zone focus on keeping possession in their grid. 
  3. The two defenders assigned to this zone step in and defenders the attackers in this zone and attempt to steal the ball from them. 
  4. The two remaining defenders position themselves in the middle zone to cut off passing lanes to intercept any pass through this zone.
  5. When the first good opportunity to pass the ball into the feet of the attackers in the opposite end zone occurs, the attackers play the ball through the middle zone to the feet of the other attackers in the other end zone.
  6. If the pass successfully makes it to the other end zone, the two defenders assigned to this zone step in to defend, while the other two defenders now move to the middle zone to cut off passing lanes.
  7. Offer points for their achievements: 
    • 1 point for a completed pass from end zone to end zone
    • 1 point for 4 completed passes in an end zone
    • 1 point for the player closing down who wins possession of the ball or forces the ball out of play
    • 1 point for the player from the middle who intercepts a pass. 
  8. If the ball goes out of play, give possession back to the 4 players in the end zone and start again.
  9. After 5 minutes rotate players through each zone.

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  • Limit the number of touches per player.

Coaching Points

While the exercise is going on encourage the players to do the following:

  1. Support every pass they make
  2. Communicate with each other i.e. tell each other if there is a man on or if they have time.
  3. Encourage good movement off the ball. It is very important the players in the end zone that are waiting to receive the ball put themselves into good areas and to make it easy for the teammates who are trying to make the pass.
  4. Stress the importance and show the benefits of closing down the opposition and limiting their options.

Equipment Required

  • Disc Cones
  • Soccer Practice or Training Balls

Drill Target Ages

  • U9, U-9, Under 9, 9 and Under
  • U10, U-10, Under 10, 10 and Under
  • U11, U-11, Under 11, 11 and Under
  • U12, U-12, Under 12, 12 and Under
  • U13, U-13, Under 13, 13 and Under
  • U14, U-14, Under 14, 14 and Under
  • U15, U-15, Under 15, 15 and Under
  • U16, U-16, Under 16, 16 and Under
  • U17 and Older

Soccer Drill Focus

Soccer Drill Titled: 4v4 Zone Game
Tagged: 4v4 Zone Game - 4 vs. 4 Soccer Drills
Published by: Chris Johnson
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