5 Advanced Skills That All Midfielders Should Learn
Taking your game to the next level involves going above and beyond what is expected of you. Practicing these skills daily will help you become a top level midfielder.
Here are five advanced skills that all midfielders should learn:
1. Balancing the midfield
This involves making sure at least one midfielder is “staying home” in the center of the field.
For example, if an outside and center mid are making runs into the box to try to get on the end of a cross, at least one midfielder should stay back and be holding down the fort in the middle of the field.
This way, if the opposition wins the ball, they won’t have an easy counter attack.
2. Spacing between lines
Keeping the lines compact will lessen the amount of space you give the opposition to play or run into. Midfielders have to make sure they are pushing up when the defense is telling them to, and also that they are up far enough to always be available to be a supporting option for the forwards.
As a midfielder, you never want too much space between the midfield to forward lines and the midfield to defense lines. Advanced midfielders are aware of this spacing and are constantly adjusting throughout the game.
3. Controlling the pace of the game
Understanding pacing is important and applicable for any position. Know when you can take your breaks or catch your breath and take advantage of that.
It’s also important to be aware of your team’s condition. Know when to slow the game down for the sake of yourself and your teammates or when to speed up and put the pressure on the opposition.
4. Heading with purpose
This doesn’t necessarily sound like an advanced skill but heading with a purpose is different than simply heading the ball. Winning balls out of the air is one of the most important responsibilities for midfielders.
The best midfielders possess the ability to not only out-jump and out-muscle your opponent in the air, but they have the skill to get the ball to go where they want.
5. Knowing where your opponent is
Defenders will usually help their midfielders by telling them where their marks are. However, midfielders need to be constantly looking around them and seeing for themselves where their players are.
This will enable you to better cut off passing lanes and prevent your opponent from getting the ball at all which will make you and your teammate’s lives easier.