How to take a corner kick like a pro | Watch the video at Unisport.
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A lot of people preach the importance of corner kicks in football. They say that it is a golden opportunity to put the ball in the back of the net - just simply get your big defenders in the box and watch them head it in, right? Well the truth isn’t quite that simple, for example, in the professional game only 15% of corners lead to chance creation, and only 8% of corners lead to a goal. So what does that mean? Well, it means that IF you are a professional footballer, and can deliver a great corner to other professional footballers, you MIGHT score 8 times out of 100. Not exactly prolific. Now imagine you aren’t a professional footballer, and you aren’t playing with other professionals - your chances drop a little, don’t they?
Well this week, I’m going to take a closer look at how to improve your corner kicks and increase your chances of hitting your team’s Per Mertesacker right on the head. JayMike also recently made a great video to illustrate these points. So if you’re ready to take corner kicks like Pirlo, you’ve come to the right place!
Typically you should take an inswinging corner from the opposite side of the field to your strong foot. That means the natural curve of the ball will take it towards the goal. This technique is very similar to taking a free kick (insert shameless plug here to my ‘5 ways to improve your free kicks’ blog). In short, you need to plant your standing foot so that your toes are pointing to around the edge of the 18 yard box - this way you will get the swing that you’re looking for. You also need to make sure to hit the ball just off to the side, and slightly low - again to generate the curve. Research shows that this type of corner kick is the most effective in terms of creating chances - especially if you aim for around the front post.
Here you would be taking the corner from the same side of the pitch as your strong foot. This should mean that the flight of the ball takes it away from the goal (and the goalkeeper). The kicking technique is the same as the inswinger, except you’re aiming for around the penalty spot. This is a great option for hitting the back post, especially when you have an attacker arriving late who is able to put some real power into the ball.
This is a hard technique to master, but when done well can take a defence by surprise, leading to some golden opportunities for your team. The technique again is very similar, however you need to strike the ball slightly higher up, and with more power - this will create some nice swing on the ball, as well as making it dip suddenly in the penalty area. A real defenders nightmare! I’d suggest taking a look at Christian Eriksen if you want to see this technique in action.
I’d only suggest using this technique as a tactic against a particularly small goalkeeper or defence, because it is the easiest to defend against. The idea is to put backspin on the ball by striking it really low - a little like a chipped pass in-game. This technique will make the ball hang in the air for a long time and give your attackers plenty of time to get into great positions to meet the ball head-on. Just keep in mind that this will also give a good defender lots of time to see where the ball is going, and a decent goalkeeper should eat these for breakfast. Every. Single. Time.
My general advice for all of the above techniques would be to practice both on your own and with your teammates. You’re WAY more likely to score if you 1) are actually good at putting the ball in a good position for the attackers, and 2) the attackers actually know where the ball will be. So what are you waiting for? Get out there an start practicing!
So those were our tips on how to improve your corner kicks. I hope you can use some of the idea I mentioned in your next game, and it gives your team a little more success from corners!.
Below you will see the JayMike’s video, if you want to see them in action.
Stay tuned for more ‘How-To’ blogs in the coming weeks for more awesome #Unisportlife content.