From recreation to competitive levels, being able to control the ball when delivered to your feet and being able to quickly and effectively deliver the ball to your teammate’s feet is absolutely essential.
The “first touch” is best described as the moment the soccer ball first makes contact with a player as they receive the ball. When the ball is passed from teammates — or from the opponent by mistake — the player must use their feet/legs/upper body to receive and control it instantly. The quality of that first touch has a huge influence over what happens in the moments that immediately follow this touch of the ball.
If a player has a good first touch, they receive the pass and have control over where the ball goes next, allowing them to quickly and effectively pass the ball to another teammate or strike the ball to score a goal.
A player with a poor first touch is unfortunately a liability to the team because they do not receive the ball properly or bring it under control, thereby losing the ball to opponents, conceding goals, or missing goal-scoring opportunities.
Girls Unite players can develop their first touch skills by consistently making more contact with the soccer ball outside of team practices. Players who add high-touch soccer drills to their schedule and consistently get at least 1000 touches on the ball every day will see a big improvement in ball handling and confidence on the pitch. Individual ball drills like those linked below can easily be done in your living room or outside against any wall.
- 10 Soccer Footwork Patterns To Master | YFutbol
- 11-Minute Wall Work | YFutbol
- Yael Averbuch’s Juggling Tutorial
If your player is looking for an even wider variety of drills to develop their first touch, we recommend checking out the Techne Futbol app.