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Do You Want to Sharpen Your Shooting Skills?

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All the dribbling skills in the world won’t amount to much if when you go to score, your shooting technique isn’t at 100%. Everything from your posture, to the angle of your foot, and your position in the field can affect your success in a multitude of ways.


Image Source: Reuters

Before you even start to practice your actual shooting skills, however, you’ll need to have a firm understanding of when to shoot…

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Not only should you focus your body and your concentration on the ball, but you should also keep your eyes on the field. Learn to spot openings through which you can shoot. Sometimes these windows of opportunity come and go in a fraction of a second.

In particular, look for situations where you can bend the ball around the defender and into the corner of the net. You are using the defender as a shield, so that the goalie doesn’t get a good look at the ball and where it’s going. You don't need to beat the defender to get a good shooting opportunity. Use the defender to your advantage to block the keeper's vision and take a quick shot.

There will be many times when your shot will end up being deflected by the opposing team and break through the crowd and slip into the goal. Or, a teammate may get a touch on the shot and throw off the keeper, with the ball going completely the other way, the keeper diving one way to save the shot, and the deflection putting the ball into the opposite corner.

In general, you want the opposing team to be worried about whether or not you’re going to take a shot. If there’s a small opportunity or even a half chance, take it with confidence, even if it's a long range shot or a shot into a crowd. When the defense thinks you’re going to shoot, they’ll rush towards you, allowing you to make a pass to an open teammate. You can also set them up for a fake shot. If they’re so used to you shooting, the simple impression that you’re going to shoot or even just a subtle cut of the ball will put them off.

Placing the Ball in the Net

These are easy opportunities where you simply redirect a cross or pass into the goal with the inside of your foot. As with playing a simple pass, you don't need to hit the ball with much power. Keep your ankle locked and almost re-direct the ball into the open space, low to the ground to the right or left of the keeper. Make sure you follow through. You don’t have to hit the ball with power, but you want to make it a crisp shot and not a flaccid, lazy strike.

However, there are always exceptions to the rule. If you can pull it off and score, try new ways of shooting or putting the ball on goal. As a young player, don't be afraid to take chances, although you should build up your basic foundation of skills and do the simple things perfectly before trying to make heel passes or bending the ball with the outside of your foot like Roberto Carlos.

 

Source - Soccer Training Info