Exercise of the Week – The Y Drill

This week we will take a look at some variations to a common exercise, the Y drill. It’s a great technical warm up exercise to work on your player’s passing, movement and communication.

With the variations below, you can incorporate other areas of the game such as shooting and 1v1s, which when you consider the limited time with our players, can be a great way to be economical with your time.

Set up four cones in the shape of the letter Y. The distances between the cones will depend on the age and ability of your players. The first part of the video below shows the movement and passing sequence, finished off with a dribble back to the start line. After every go, the player who receives the first pass has to start on the other side of the mannequin.


The second part of the video shows a similar sequence of passing and movement but with a give and go at the end, before dribbling back to the start. It is important that the players treat every cone or mannequin as if they are a real defender, so the movement away from them has to be quick and sharp as if trying to lose the defender.




This is a great way to incorporate some passing and shooting into your warm up.  The passing and movements are the same, including the progression that has the give and go, but rather than dribble back to the start, the player will have a shot on goal as shown in the video below.



Just like with the previous descriptions, the passing and movements are similar, but now we finish with a 1v1 to goal as shown in the video below.



Further Variations:

Be creative! Think of different passing combinations and also whether you could incorporate other parts of the game.

Coaching Points:

  • Timing of the movements away from the cones or mannequin
  • Quality of the pass (firm and into the back foot)
  • Open body position to be able to receive on the back foot
  • Awareness (check shoulder before receiving a pass)
  • Communication (man on, time, turn etc…)
  • Correct shooting technique
  • In the 1v1s, keep the ball close with small touches as the attacker gets close to the defender and use a bigger touch into space to get past them and accelerate into the space
  • Encourage creativity in the 1v1s (drop shoulder, step overs etc…)
  • Challenge your players to maintain a high intensity throughout

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