How To Teach 11 v 11 Soccer and a 3-1-4-2 Soccer Formation

Hi, I just joined the Premium program, you have a great site and I'm overwhelmed with all the good information

I've been coaching the same team for 3 years now, we are at U11 this year and moving up from 8 vs 8 to 11 vs 11, and I'm trying to figure out what formation is best for my boys. I'm thinking the 3 1 4 2 may be a good one, as I have one really good player on defense who would make a great stopper. My question is this, how do you teach the 11 vs 11 and the formation. All the good games and activities to teach the skills and the small sided games so everyone has more touches are great, but at what point and how do you put it all together and teach the actual formation of 11 vs 11, and since we only have 14 players it's hard to practice with 11 vs 11 unless we play against another team, and that turns into more of a match than practice...


Coach Rory, Washington

Hi Rory, thanks for the letter.

The answers to your questions are on Premium. Read:

  1. "Formation Selection and Assigning Positions"
  2. "Formations" in the Dictionary
  3. "Quick Team Improvement Program", no. 3, 4, 7, 8, and 9.
  4. "How To Teach Soccer Formations"
  5. "23 of the Best SoccerHelp Tips and Tactics
  6. "Stopper Importance" Soccer_Stopper_Soccer_Formation_8v8.shtml

Please let me know how this works for you.

I think a 3-1-4-2 might be a good choice because you can play your best athlete at Stopper, keep 2 tough players at the 2 Center Mid spots, and hide weaker players at the LMF and RMF spots. Put one good really fast player at Forward and one very aggressive player who can win the ball in the box and score.

David Huddleston