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Top 5 Futsal Skills for Early Player Development

By USYF Contributor, 06/01/19, 6:45PM CDT


1. Juggling

Juggling a futsal ball is the pathway to developing the perfect touch. Juggling does not ensure a pathway to the pros, but the player fluent in juggling crystallizes their ability to flow with the ball and perfect their touch. Juggling a futsal ball helps a player become comfortable with the ball and developing their fluidity in a way no other skill can.



2. Dribbling

Though it seems obvious, dribbling a futsal ball is a perfect way to turn the game of futsal from checkers into chess. A player with exceptional dribbling skills has the ability to keep their eyes up from the ball to think a couple moves ahead and outsmart the opposing team. Dribbling the ball, like juggling, allows a player the comfort of moving with the ball, not just kicking it around.



3. Passing

Passing the ball is a sensational way to develop a player’s coordination and to develop their ability to “spread out” on the futsal court. Often, we see too many players bunching up around the ball (especially at younger ages) and this leads to confusion and a lack of team-coordination. Passing the ball against the garage door, back of the house, or against the fence in the back is a perfect way for any young player to get a hold on making clean, crisp passes. Passing the ball opens the doorway to developing a firm, confident foot at a young age. 



4. Body Control

Body control refers to a player’s ability to move their body fluidly to optimize balance and coordination. Since body control falls under the category of technique rather than physical fitness, body control refers mostly to correctness of form. Long strides, correct running form, and a low center of gravity are good indications of good body control.



5. Spatial awareness

Spatial awareness refers to a player’s ability to see space clearly across the entire pitch and utilize it to their advantage. What does it mean to see space clearly?

First of all, players need to be aware of the immediate space around them. According to the position of the ball, their own teammates, and their opponents, where should they be? Should they be moving into a space to receive a pass? Should they be drawing defenders away from their teammate who has the ball to create open space for them?

Secondly, intelligent players are always aware of where their teammates are and where they should be according to the positioning of the other team. There are two reasons they need to know where their teammates are and should be: (1) to tell them where they should be if they’re not there, and (2) to anticipate their teammate’s position and make a quick, instinctive pass almost without looking. In fact, scouts often look for this sixth sense of a footballer.

Finally, intelligent players are extremely aware of the geometry of the game. They know how to position themselves and others to make wide angles and easy passing opportunities for themselves while on offense and narrow angles and difficult passing opportunities for their opponents while on defense.

Spatial awareness is a complicated skill which encompasses many other skills absolutely essential to achieving success in futsal. In fact, spatial awareness is also closely related to the next game intelligence skill, tactical knowledge.

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