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What are Set Piece Actions?

When we talk about Set Pieces, it is essential to understand that, from MBP’s perspective, these phases are as fundamental as the attacking phase or the attack-defence transition.

At MBP School of Coaches, we define SPs as the moments that arise when there is a stoppage, being the only moment in football when the ball is not in motion and only one team can put it into play.

Below, we will explore the 6 representative actions of the SPs phase in football:

Kick-off: The action taken from the centre of the pitch to start the match, the second half or to restart play after a goal.

Throw-in: Action taken with the hands to restart play when the ball goes beyond the boundary of the field of play along one of the side lines.

Free Kick: Action to restart play when the referee signals a foul, except when it occurs inside the penalty area.

Penalty kick: An infringement committed inside the penalty area punishable by a kick from 11 metres (penalty mark).

Goal kick: Action to restart play when the ball goes out of bounds on the end line and the last team to touch it was the team attacking in that direction.

Each of these actions has different objectives and purposes, both in attack and defence.

The depth of analysis and training on specific concepts within these actions can make the difference in any game, such as positioning at wide free kicks or the set-up at corner kicks.

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The importance of SPs is reflected in this striking data:

  • Approximately 25-28 minutes of the 90 minutes of play are for SPs.
  • In a match, there are between 100-130 SP breaks.
  • La Liga recorded an average of 38 free-kick actions per game in the 21/22 season.
  • In total, there are between 22 and 30 goal kicks in a match.
  • There are on average about 10 corner kicks in a football match. This always depends on multiple factors that alter the number of corner actions.
  • The average number of corner kicks is 21 +/- in attack and defence, so there are usually more than 40 in a match.
  • The total number of free kicks for and against in a football match is 38.

In conclusion, optimising set-piece opportunities can be the determining factor that leads a team to success.

To go deeper into this crucial aspect of the game, MBP School of Coaches has created a Set Pieces course, where all the aspects that a coach must consider in implementing them to achieve greater success are addressed.

We invite you to continue growing in your football development!

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