5 Important Reminders for Defending Corner Kicks
Corner kicks can be a turning point in a game, so it’s vital to defend them well. Your team must be on the same page if you want to prevent the opposition from scoring a goal.
Here are five reminders for when you are defending corner kicks:
1. Be organized
Make sure you or your teammate is verbally directing others and getting them to be properly matched up with their opponents. Check that these match ups look even or like you’ll have the better shot at winning the ball.
For example, put your best player in the air against their most dangerous attacker, and so on. Sometimes it’s beneficial to have one of your good players in the air not have a mark and just have them be free to win the ball. This is of course only after everyone else is already marked up.
2. Protect the most dangerous area
Obviously the goal is the most dangerous area, so the 6-yard box is definitely not where you would want to leave players open.
If you are down numbers, make sure you are taking away the most threatening positions the attackers are in.
3. Be aware of your body positioning
Open your body up correctly and don’t turn to face your own net, this can lead to an own goal if you miss-kick the ball. Keep the ball in front of you.
The best way to do this, is to start by having your shoulders squared at whoever is kicking the corner, then open up your front shoulder to the rest of the field as the ball is coming across. Opening your body up properly will allow you to attack the ball going forward and give you greater momentum to get it out of danger.
Having good body position will also help to ensure that you don’t kick the ball out for another corner.
4. Get to the ball first
Body up on the player you are defending and don’t let them beat you to the ball. If they jump, make sure you are challenging them in the air as well.
Don’t let them get in between you and the goal.
5. Get a good clearance
Focus on making solid contact with the ball to get it up the field and out of danger. Don’t clear it to the center of the field, but try to get it wide and up the sideline as far as you can.
Try to target one of your forwards and catch the other team with a counter attack if possible.