Cristian Tello: Dance away from defenders

“I play out wide but sometimes struggle to beat the opposition full-back. How can I improve in one-on-one situations?”
Jordi Antorn, via Twitter

Cristian Tello says:

“People say the stepover is my signature move. I learned it by myself. Sometimes these are things a winger needs to work out alone, to become more effective in game situations.

It doesn’t have to be a stepover – any trick you can perform well to deceive a defender is a good thing.

The most important thing when one-on-one with a defender is to approach them at pace, as it makes you more difficult to stop.

A couple of yards away, do your trick or drop a shoulder – just as effective at speed – and you should be away.

You need variety, too. If you only have one trick then you become predictable and you make life easy for the defender.

Also, approach them at different angles: that makes them think and change what they’re going to do.

Keep your head up, so you can see their movements, but have what you’re going to do ready in your mind.”

Tello wears adiZero F50 boots. Visit or join the conversation @adidasUK #F50 #allin or nothing

For more football tips see:
Lucas Moura: Dribble the Brazilian way
Accelerate and beat your man like Messi
Angel di Maria on the art of wing play
Play like Spain: Master the 1 v 1

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Andrew Murray is a freelance journalist, who regularly contributes to both the FourFourTwo magazine and website. Formerly a senior staff writer at FFT and a fluent Spanish speaker, he has interviewed major names such as Virgil van Dijk, Mohamed Salah, Sergio Aguero and Xavi. He was also named PPA New Consumer Journalist of the Year 2015.