How to defend like England: transition
Switching from attack to defence isn’t always easy. So how do you handle transition in football? This article is part of a series on the defensive tactics of our national teams. This time, we explain how their approach can help you prepare your players for defending in transition.
You’re on the halfway line, ball at your feet, patiently probing for space. Suddenly, your winger makes a run. You commit to the pass – but it’s intercepted. The opposition wins the ball and runs towards you at speed.
What do you do?
This is a moment of transition in football – and it’s becoming more and more common.
Many teams, including England’s, are starting to favour a possession-based approach. This means that opponents are more prepared to counter-attack quickly.
The game is fluid, and players can find themselves out of possession in a matter of seconds.
When transition happens, teams are vulnerable. The opposition will exploit whatever space is available. Your players must be comfortable defending in central and wide areas to successfully delay and deny their attacks.
How our national teams handle transition in football
Watch the video to see how quickly transition happens, and how the England Men's senior team respond: