Cut inside with deadly force

Explode infield and find the top corner, thanks to tips from one of the Premier League’s most menacing raiders

“I’m a pacy winger, but I struggle to cut inside the full-back to shoot. What advice  can you give me to improve this?”
Alex Hicks, via email

Ashley Young says:
“Playing on the left and being a right-footed player, defenders try to show me down the line, but you need to have the intelligence to know when to come inside.

More after the break

You need the confidence to cut inside or trick your way past the defender. A lot of it comes down to reading the defender and knowing how they’re trying to stop you.

Once you get inside, it’s about looking to see what’s on and reading what the other defenders and goalkeeper are going to do.

You also have to assess the runs your team-mates are making. Is a pass on? A cross? A shot? You look at the whole picture and see what the best option is. Decision-making is key.

If a shot is on I like to open up my body and try to curl it. You’ve got to get your head and body over the ball and strike it with your instep.

If you’re going to put curl on it, naturally you would aim for the far corner, out of the goalkeeper’s reach.

If you want to hit the near-post, you’re better off opting for power and hoping the ball gets through the bodies.

Alternatively, you can try and put disguise on your shot, by opening up your body as if you were about to shoot for the far corner and then bending it to the near-post.

To do this you need to wrap your foot around the ball and use your body to generate the power.

If you asked any goalkeeper I think they would say it’s horrible for them to see a player cut inside and have a shot. It’s something I’ve practised a lot in training."

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Also see:
Ashley Young: Improve change of direction
Ashley Young: How to skin the full-back
Ashley Young: Beat your man with this plan
Ashley Young: Outmuscle your marker
Ashley's step by step gym guide: Improve your strength
Make the difference with Premier League fitness
Ashley Young: Outrun the opposition
Ashley Young's top training drill
Ashley Young: Improve your stability on the ball
Ashley Young: Improve your balance
Ashley Young: Stay strong in the challenge
Ashley Young: Shoot harder
Ashley Young's step by step gym guide: Improve your speed
Ashley Young: Shoot with deadly accuracy
Ashley Young: Faster from the first minute

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