As a keeper, you have to not only think about stopping the shots coming at you, but you also have to think about your delivery of the ball back into play. This is rarely as simple as kicking the ball as hard as you can up the field.

There’s a few things to think about and that’s because the goal kick can be an excellent tool in the goalkeepers arsenal to help control the tempo of the game. There are endless ways in which you can use your goal kick, but let’s look at a few of the key options.

Holding Onto the Ball Longer:

This is the main way that goalkeepers can utilize their kicks to manipulate the game in front of them. There are many reasons for this but the main one is for when the opposing team is putting pressure on your defenders.

It’s worth noting that usually keepers will only use this when their team is in the lead. Wasting precious minutes when you’re falling behind is never a good thing, even if the other team does have the momentum. Also bear in mind the 6-second rule for possession, so ensure you always have a defender to pass a short ball to.

Kicking the Ball Up Field:

Kicking the ball up field is a great way to give your team a chance to get a break. It’s risky because your opponents may immediately regain possession of the ball. If you’re trailing behind in the latter ends of the game then this is a good tactic to use. You sometimes want the other team’s strikers to pull back into their half as much as possible to prevent them getting another goal.