Enzo Misuraca Date: 21st March 2013 at 12:00pm
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Forza is pleased to bring its readers a regular new feature – Il Mister. Our experts will endeavour to show you all the methods and tactical secrets employed by Serie A’s best coaches.

It is perhaps quite naïve of some fans to think that professional players and coaches spend a couple of hours every day running round a field and smashing footballs randomly at a goalkeeper before entering the stadium at the weekend, in an attempt to fulfil all our sporting dreams and win the match.

The reality in fact, is wildly different.  aim to dispel this misconception and bring you a series of articles after speaking to a top Serie A coach, to find out exactly what goes into preparing for the weekend’s match.

Having already looked at Wednesday, we now move on to Thursday which sees only an afternoon session that is based on attacking schemes of play.

Thursday

On the field – Afternoon Session

Warm up – 15 minutes
Small sided game using hands to move the ball around

Exercise 1
Attacking schemes – 20 minutes

Attacking scheme 1

Scheme 1

Player 6 takes ball out of defence and passes to 7 who has dropped deep from midfield.

player 4 advances, 7 moves ball onto 2 who has also moved up from his defensive position. 2 then moves the ball to player 10 who has dropped between the midfield and defensive

This gap has been created as players 9 and 11 make forward runs. 10 now passes the ball to 4 who switches play to the left back who has made a run.

From here, if 3 decides to cross, 11 attacks the front post and 9 the far post as 10 arrives to wait at the edge of the box. The rest of the team advances and covers the spaces.

However, 3 may also decide to off load the ball to 8, in which case 8 then looks for a through ball to either 11 or 9 or he could loft a pass for 10 who should be making a break into the box.

Objectives of drill

• Allow full back to cross
• Switch of play
• Exploit weak side

Scheme 2

Attacking scheme 2

Player 2 moves ball to 6 who then passes to player 4 who has dropped deep.

4 then finds 7 who immediately sends a vertical ball up to player 9 who has lost his marker by making a clever move forward then back.

9 then passes ball to the trequartista (10) who can take a touch then send a ball out wide for player 2.

From here 11 attacks the front post whilst 8 runs to the back of the area.

9 also attacks the area around the penalty spot. The rest of the team covers the spaces in case of loss of possession.

Objectives of drill

• Allow full back to cross
• Force opposition to defend centrally
• Exploit flanks

Scheme 3

Attacking scheme 3

Player 6 moves with ball then offloads to player 5 who has moved wide. He then moves up, with player 4 who covers him before making a pass to player 10 who has exploited some space left by players 9 and 11 who have made a run forward.

10 dribbles then flights a ball to 8 who has made a run to the flank from his midfield position.

8 has left a space now for 5 to attack and receive a pass if necessary. 8 can now look for a through ball for 11 and 9 whilst the rest of the team covers the spaces.

If not, 8 can pass to 11 who drops back deep and then wait for player 3 to make overlapping run for a cross or has the option of passing the ball to 7 who can do the same for player 2 if he decides to make a forward run.

Objectives of drill

• Allow central midfielder to move wide for cross
• Strikers to make run into space for a through ball
• Create space between opposition midfield and defence which can be exploited

Exercise 2
11 v 11 – 45 minutes

The above schemes will now be brought into live play as the coach splits the match into thirds so each pattern can be adequately practiced.

Click here to see how a Serie A coach prepares his Friday session.