Soccer Coaching Books & Videos | Our online store for coaches!

Soccer Drill – Playing Over the Third Man

This circuit improves the group-tactical element of “Playing over the third man”. In the first part of this exercise, the players will have to play on the wing and in the second part build up the game from the defense. These kinds of circuits can be implemented perfectly after a warm-up.

Good communication and timing are key when playing over the third man. The players should always move towards the ball and coordinate their runs into the open space. The pace of the exercise should be increased steadily to a maximum level.


Training area is a ¾ field, 14-20 players are distributed as shown in the graphic, 3-4 balls, 6-8 dummies, approx. 14 cones,

Playing over the third man


  1. A passes B, who comes towards the ball.
  2. B controls the ball and dribbles towards C.
  3. B passes C, which runs through the dummies.
  4. C passes into the run of D who runs through the dummy goal.
  5. D passes directly into the run of E sprint sprints into the space.
  6. E passes to F, who controls the ball and turns to direction of G.
  7. F passes to G, who dribbles the ball through the dummies.
  8. G passes to H.
  9. H passes to I.
  10. I passes to K, who runs through the dummy goal.
  11. K controls the ball and dribbles to the start.


  • Procedure counter clockwise (Playing over the left side)

Coaching tips:

  1. Good communication and good timing when executing “playing over the third man”.
  2. Always come towards the ball.
  3. Coordinated runs into space
  4. Increase the pace as high as possible

eBook – Fundamental Attacking Strategies

Learn how to efficiently open and use space against deeply defending opponents! With detailed solutions for the build-up, training exercises for all skill levels and emphasis on the right coaching.

More Stories
Soccer Drills: Attacking with Diagonal Passes