One of the great attractions of soccer is the simplicity of the game. Anyone can quickly understand the objective and the rules of the game.
Simply stated the objective of the game is to score goals by putting the soccer ball into your opponents goal more often than your opponent puts the ball into yours.
Each team is allowed to have eleven players active on the field at a time. The names of these positions are: center, left wing, right wing, left midfield, center midfield, right midfield, left defense, right defense, center defense (also known as stopper), goalie, and sweeper.
When playing soccer you may not use your hands to make contact with the ball, only your feet, your body or your head can be used to contact the ball.
The only exception is the goalie who may use their hands to defend the goal by catching or blocking the ball. The goalie may also use their hands for various throws.
Soccer is a relatively simple game and the basics are easily learned, however the skills take lots of practice to master.
There are three basic skill areas that must be learned. The first of three skills is ball control. Ball control means to be able to take control of and keep control of the ball in a variety of situations as you move the ball down the field. This includes controlling the ball while running and while being defended by your opponent.
The basic skills can be learned and practiced in the comfort of your own backyard. Special equipment isn’t needed to learn how to control the ball. The only requirement is a soccer ball and desire.
This is one of the great appeals of soccer, it is a sport that can easily be learned by practice and dedication anywhere in the world without any expensive equipment or facilities.
The second skill set is learning to control various kicks. These can be practiced by simply kicking the ball against a wall or practiced with one of your friends. Accurately kicking the ball to make passes to your teammates as your run down field is essential to getting your teammates into scoring position.
The best way to practice the different ball handling techniques is to practice each specific skill over and over until you’ve mastered that technique.
A basic kick to master is to learn how to curve the ball past an opponent or past the goalie. How you execute the curve kick depends on what direction you want to curve the ball.
To curve the ball to the left you will kick the right side of the ball with the inside of your foot. This will add spin to the ball that will cause the ball to curve in flight.
To curve the ball to the right you will kick the left side of the ball with the outside of your foot. Practice curving the ball until you can curve the ball past your friend consistently.
The final skill to learn is dribbling. You can practice your ball dribbling skills easily by learning to dribble the ball a straight line marked on the ground. Then set up a course using cones or other obstacles and practice dribbling around the cones or obstacles.