How to Hit the Target when Taking Shots in Soccer

Where to aim? - (Photo: Veritasdefenderdads.org)

Scoring goals is the supreme goal of soccer.  But as any striker knows, scoring a goal is no easy feat.  Not only do you have to maneuver your way past defenders to find an open space, but you must beat the keeper as well (and he gets to use his hands!).  After all that, you must make sure that your shot is on target, or else all that hard work will be wasted as the ball flies past the posts.  Here are some tips to help you keep your shots on target and score as many goals as possible:

When shooting, try to keep your feet over the ball.  This will help the ball stay low and prevent it from sailing over the crossbar, which is liable to happen if your foot hits the ball from too low an angle.  Although the upper-90 rocket shot is the most pleasing to the fans, it is least likely to actually happen.  Keeping shots low also creates a great challenge for goalies because they have to reach low in order to save it.  Making it harder for goalies should be your goal, so try to keep shots low to the ground.

There is a great dilemma for strikers.  While aiming for the center of the goal is the best way to hit a shot on target, it is also the likely to be a shot right at the goalie and will be saved with supreme ease.  Remember, your goal is not to take shots on target; it is to score goals!  Therefore, you will have to take some risks.  Aim for the posts.  Yes, you run the risk of missing the target, but in aiming for the posts, that is where the ball is likely to go.  Practice your aim and make sure you can hit your target.

But the thing you also must realize is that your aim depends on the situation.  When you have the ball in front of goal, there is often less than a second of time available to make a decision. Analyze the particular angles you see and shoot accordingly.  Try to aim away from the goalie in the area that looks most difficult for him to make a save.

Another way to help you find the target with a higher probability is to work on shooting in motion.  In soccer, you will rarely have the opportunity to take a placed shot, with only penalty kicks and free kicks presenting such chances.  Most goals come while you are running, often at full sprint.  Therefore, when you are practicing shooting, do it while on the move.  Yes, this is harder, but it accurately reflects the game.  You should practice in order to improve your live game skills, so practice them.

In conclusion, you need to work hard in order to always hit the target with your shots.  Keeping your shots low is vital, as is aiming around the peripheries of the goal.  Avoid taking shots at the goalie, and try to work on shooting while you are running with the ball from various angles, as it will better replicate a live game feel.


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