No lino? No problem, says Kevin Phillips

If you can’t find a flag-bearer at short notice, here’s how to take advantage, with wily striker Kevin Phillips

1) Suss out the defence

More after the break

"I used to play for non-league Baldock Town so I know what it’s like to play with a dodgy linesman, or without one altogether. You need to work out if the defence is pushing up or dropping deep. A high line is perfect because it gives you space to run into and there’s no lino to call it. If the defence sits deep, your midfield can push on, giving you more opportunities to get it the box."

2) Stay on the move

"If you stay rooted to the spot it’s easy for the defender to mark you. By staying on the move, the defender can never rest. They will tire mentally and physically. Keep looking for the space and moving into it. I watched Luis Suarez recently and he was constantly moving – this confused the defender. He didn’t know whether to let him go or stick with him and risk getting dragged out of position."

3) Get on your marks

"Stand either side of your marker with your body side-on, so you’re ready to burst into the space behind. Make sure you can see the ball and what’s unfolding up the field. The defender has to keep an eye on you and the ball. With no lino he can’t risk letting you run, but at the same time he can’t drop too deep otherwise their team will get pinned back."

For more football tips see:
Alan Smith: Beat the offside trap
Time your run to perfection
Darren Bent: How to be a maestro of movement
Kevin Doyle: Lose your marker from set-pieces
Playing the offside trap as a full-back: the do's and don'ts

Promo sitewide