One of the most critical yet underrated concepts in the beautiful game is the notion of the first touch. An impeccable first touch is something that all of the greats have in common, regardless of position and playing style. It’s often the difference between executing a play or creating a costly turnover. And it’s even more important in small-sided games like futsal and street football where you’re forced to operate in tight spaces.
Street football, in fact, can be considered an advanced method that makes players develop a cleaner first touch, faster. While a full-field player may be able to get away with a sloppy touch here and there, in quicker-paced games, the tides can turn with the slightest blunder, leaving no room for mediocre traps or passes. What’s more, when the action intensifies and play gets rough, the best tactical strategy for the small-sided game is to release the ball early with a skillful one touch.
The (fairly) recently released Nike soccer app highlights this key concept with a drill that emphasizes the importance of the first touch, and how a player can go from “How am I going to control this ball?” to “How am I going to hurt the opposition?” Take a look and let us know what you think!