June 14, 2022

Soccer Skills in 60 Seconds: How to Improve Your First Touch

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Mike Semenza

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Soccer Skills in 60 Seconds: How to Improve Your First Touch Image

Hey guys, it’s coach, Mike Semenza here with Blayze soccer and another “Skills in 60 Seconds.”

Today, we are going to cover how to improve your first touch. We will use Christian Pulisic of the U.S. Men’s National Team as our example of executing a great first touch. In the following clip, Pulisic does two things well that you will want to implement.

  • Keep your eye on the ball. Look at Pulisic’s head in the video. He has an intense focus on the flight of the ball. He is watching the path, looking for any spin. He is studying the ball so that as it hits his foot, he knows how to shape his foot.
  • Shape your foot. Notice how Pulisic changes his foot. He pulls his toe back toward his forehead, to create a level surface. This will kill the momentum of the ball. He is also shaping it a little to the side. This is to be able to push the ball away from the defender and into open space.

Next Pulisic cuts the ball back to a teammate.

To improve your first touch, practice watching the ball during training. Notice how it moves through the air. Get used to reading how it will dip. Next, work on trapping the ball out of the air. There are some great drills to practice traps. An easy one is to throw a ball off a wall or rebounder and use your foot to take it out of the air. When you are comfortable with the trap. Try using a push movement, like Pulisic instead of stopping it.

Get out there and get practicing!

Learn More With Blaze!

The secret to mastering any skill is practice! Are you looking to become a stronger player? Could you use direct feedback from a professional coach on how to improve your passing skills, communication, or vision on the field?

At Blayze we give you personalized video analysis coaching sessions and individual training programs, plus mentorship from professional coaches.

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Blayze Coach Mike Semenza

Mike Semenza

6+ years of professional coaching with LA Galaxy, EXOS and COPA STC

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