1v1 Soccer Drill

It’s A Knockout

In this highly enjoyable 1v1 game, 4 players compete against each other simultaneously and try to knock their opponents out by scoring on their goal. Players love the competitive nature of the game and once familiar with it, they will be asking to play it again and again!

It’s A Knockout – 1v1 Drill

Set Up The Drill

Set up a 20×20 yard grid using small cones. Create a small goal (approximately 2 yards in length) in each corner of the grid using tall cones or poles. Have a supply of balls ready by the coach’s feet to help facilitate quick restarts.


Divide the players up into four teams. Each team should stand in a straight line directly behind one of the goals but outside the grid (i.e. one team on each corner). To start the game, the coach plays 1 ball into the grid and the 1st player from each line runs on to compete for the possession of the ball. They play a 1v1v1v1 game against each other trying to score on any of the goals but their own (i.e. each player defends one goal whilst trying to score in the other three).

Once someone’s goal is scored on, that player is eliminated from the round and joins the back of their own line. The coach kicks a new ball in and the remaining 3 players play a 1v1v1 game with the same objective. Repeat until there is just one player left. That person wins a point for their team. Once that happens the round is over and the next people in line start the game again playing 1v1v1v1. Play for a designated amount of time or until a team reaches a certain amount of points.


For older players, you can make the goals bigger and add a goalkeeper to each goal to add an element of shooting too!

Coaching Points

  • Be positive; try and be first to the ball and attack your opponents at speed.
  • Use of  tricks and sharp turns to try and beat and surprise your opponent.
  • Keep your head up and look for the easiest goal to attack.


To make the games go quicker and encourage close control, tell the players that if they kick the ball out of the grid they will automatically be eliminated from that round!