Completely free; just inside own half, wide left. Quick short run deeper towards the ball, to get even more space. Get half turned, to speed up the turn and make sure any approaching defender behind is in view. The ball arrives from the inside left back position, on a slight angle. Decision made for control. Watch the bobble on the grass and lift right foot in readiness. Now cushion the ball with the right instep across body, into the space ahead.
Attack fast into their half. Push the ball straight ahead into the open space. 30 yards out now, slow down as central midfielder Tielemans closes in from the right. See that the defensive line has backed off to the edge of the box. They’re scared of the pace of attack. Choices: Work the ball out to the left wing back and support him? Or try and cut across the approaching defender and attack the centre of the park just outside the box? Decision made. As Tielemans comes in front from the right, use his momentum and balance against him. Drop left foot outwards to the left and jink to go left, once he’s sold and over-balanced to the left, flick the ball up and over his dangling foot and jink to the right. He’s gone!
Burst away, ball under control, keep it tight on the foot. Central defenders don’t close in and back away to edge of the box. That’s a mistake! Choices: run at them, draw a player and pass off on the angle to our froward? Or shoot using a right foot laces drive with power? Or bend the ball outside the right post to come back in?
Decision made. Bend it is. Quickly shape the body with the chest angled wide of the post; touch the ball with the outside of the right foot out to the right on an angle. Perfect set up. Now connect with the inside of the right foot, striking the bottom right of the ball. Use the defender as a guide to bend the ball around. The pace of the run, the forward moving ball and the perfect connection rockets the ball on a curved trajectory, outside the post with the spin arcing the ball back inside the post. Smack! The ball hits the net, out of reach of Belgium’s goalkeeper Courtois’ outstretched fingers.
What a goal! The pace of the run and break was exhilarating. Insigne‘s confidence to turn and attack, along with his exceptional decision making, as he observed defenders and his own teams movements, was a player at the top of his game. And what a finish! The technique used was unusual for a shot in a central edge of the box position, particularly whilst running at pace with the ball. Normally a player will use a laces power strike technique in a similar situation.
The use of video with a Coach review is fantastic in honing skill and performance.
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