This Week in Training: Transition

This week in training:


All our teams are working on Transition. There are three phases of play in a soccer game. One is attacking. Another is defending.  The third is transition.

Transition is divided into two components: transition into attack and transition into defense.    In attack, good team shape means spreading the field, and making the area of play as long and as wide as possible in order to create space to operate.  In defense, good team shape means staying compact in order to limit time and space of the opponents.  In effect, good team shape in attack looks very different then good team shape and defense.  This is where transition comes in.  Players need to have good understanding of how to change the shape as quickly as possible when transitioning from defense into attack, and from attacking to defense.

When transitioning from attack to defense, pressure or the line-of-confrontation needs to be established immediately, and the supporting players need to provide cover, balance, compactness, and depth before the opposing team is able to capitalize on the team being spread out.

When transitioning from defense to attack, players need to have a good understanding of where and how to exploit the opposing teams shape and momentary vulnerability. The player was recovered the ball needs to think quickly and deliver the ball in an area that will have the most impact.  The supporting players need to provide outlets and options in open spaces and dangerous areas in order to attack before the other team is able to recover.  The attacking team must also recognize went is not possible to play forward and instead look to maintain possession in order to develop a patient attack and control the tempo of the game.

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