Master your finishing: The toe poke

Pounce on the loose ball and fire it into the back of the net with this drill from the Nike Academy. Ssssshhhhhh toe punts are allowed....

The toe punt is the hallmark of any Sunday League donkey, right? Wrong. Polished into a well executed toe poke and it transforms into a potent weapon.

Add that to an armoury of goalscoring artillery and you have the firepower to react with deadly force in any situation.

More after the break

Being able to adapt to different scenarios - a goalmouth scramble for instance - arms a striker with the ability to convert half chances into goals.

This drill, simulates a packed penalty box, giving the strikers a few seconds to seize upon a loose ball and ripple the back of the net - using the laces, sidefoot and even the toe.

"Sometimes the ball will drop and you'll only get enough time to poke your toe at it and get a stab at the ball," says creator of the drill, Jimmy Gilligan, head of the Nike Academy.

"This drill teaches the player decision making. If you take too many touches your chance has gone, if you snatch at it your chance has gone. This is an art of finishing."

You can find out more about how you can get involved with the Nike Academy, and watch the players’ progress this season, by visiting facebook and

Also see:
Master your finishing: 1 v 1 attacking
Master your finishing: Combination play in and around the penalty area
Master your finishing: Three finishes in one
Master your finishing: Heads and tails
Master your finishing: Power shooting
Master your finishing: Shots and blocks
Master your finishing: The reverse pass to cross and finish
Master your finishing: The serve and volley
Master your finishing: The four-way finish

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