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High Tempo Possession Games

Sometimes movement and tempo can become a challenge in traditional rondo set-ups where players can stand in a certain position and wait for the ball. This week we take a look at three possession exercises that coaches can use to incorporate high intensity, physical work into their session. As coaches plan for sessions after a lay-off, those who opt for an uptempo style of play will want to get the element of speed and movement alongside the possession aspect. That consistency can help with clarity and communication of the game model, as well as adding competition and excitement to the session. In the exercises this week, we study examples from Thomas Tuchel, Roger Schmidt and Stefano Pioli. If you enjoy the sessions, you can find the details below.


First, below is the MSC Breakdown discussing the exercises. Please subscribe to the MSC YouTube page.




5v2 Roger Schmidt Possession Game


- Exercise takes place inside a 10x20 yard area split into two

- Seven players are organized into one team of five and a possession team of two

- Game starts with 4v2 in one square – one attacking teammate stays in the other square

- After 5 consecutive passes, the possession team are looking to transfer the ball to their teammate in the other square

- After the transfer, three supporting players go across (along with the defenders) to re- create a 4v2 again

- Possession team are awarded one point for each successful transfer

- Defending team are looking to win the ball and score in the mini-goals

- Play 6x3 minute games and switch roles each game




Thomas Tuchel 5v5v5 Game


- Exercise takes place inside three 15x15 yard squares

- Fifteen players are split into three teams of five and each team starts in an assigned zone

- One team is designated as the defensive team to begin

- Coach starts the exercise by playing into one of the possession teams

- Two defensive players can go across to press

- The possession team are looking to play 5 consecutive passes, before transferring the ball to the other possession team for one point

- If the defensive team win possession, they can play back into their zone or into the other zone. After doing so, the roles now change and they become a possession team, with the team that lost possession transitioning to the defending team

- Play 5x4 minute games and keep the score





Milan 5v1 Rondo



- Exercise takes place inside a 10x10 yard square with a supply of balls located 5-10 yards away

- Six players are assigned a number

- On the coaches signal, the first player sprints to get a ball, passes it into the group, and then sprints in to defend

- After they win the ball, the next player numbered must go immediately to do the same

- Game continues until everyone sprints and defends twice

- Play 6 total games




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