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A group of young players play bib tag
SESSION

Bib tag 

Danny Fenner, FA diversity and inclusion officer, shares a fun session idea to help young players develop their movement skills with the ball.  

This session helps players to: 

  • run with the ball  
  • develop dribbling techniques.  
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Organisation

We've based this session on ten players, but it can be adapted to your numbers.  

Set up a suitable area, e.g. 30x30 yards for a team of 10. Then, give nine players a ball to run with and the other player a bib to hold.  

If you have a large group, split your players into groups of 10 – or as close as possible – and set up as many areas as needed. 

 

How to play

The players with a ball are tasked to dribble within the area you've set up. Encourage them to take big touches and small touches. They should also try to use skills and body movements to protect, hide and manoeuvre the ball. 
 
The player without the ball is the 'tagger'. They must chase the other players and, when close enough, throw their bib towards the ball. If it makes contact with the ball, they earn a point.  

Set a timer for 30 seconds and play this for multiple rounds – swapping the 'tagger' each time. The game ends when everyone has had a go being the 'tagger'. The player with the most points wins.  

 

Progression

If your players master this game – or find it too hard – try adding a progression. But remember, learning takes time. So don't alter your activity too quickly or too much.    

To help, try using the STEP framework (Youth Sports Trust, 2002). This is a great way to keep things fun, engaging and appropriate.
  

Space

Make the area smaller to increase the challenge for players running with the ball or alter the shape of the area to change angles of approach.

 

Task

Challenge players with the ball to travel through gates and tally how many they get through. 

 

Equipment

Use smaller footballs to help players develop their contact on the ball and give 'taggers' a small ball to throw instead of a bib.

 

Players 

Increase the number of 'taggers' or place players into pairs or threes and give each mini-team a ball.  

 

If you use this session with your team, let us know how you get on by posting in the England Football Community.