The U9 age group is the first year of competitive soccer within Delaware FC Wilmington. Therefore each training session will focus on building a strong individual foundation of skill by developing good training habits and working on the technical aspects of the game in 7 v 7 format.

Time Commitment:

Fall and Spring  - Teams will train two times per week with a professional trainer and Friday "free play" sessions. The team will play in local leagues and 2-5 Tournaments

Winter - Winter training and futsal is an optional program. Futsal is a great way to develop ball control and for players to get a lot of touches on the ball. It will start in December and run through February. The time commitment for training is 1 hr – 2 hrs per week. They will train once a week and play in three futsal tournaments.  

Cost for winter will be $300 per player and includes: Gym rental fee, futsal tournaments, staff payment, admin fees, etc.  

High Priorities:
• Make every player technically confident on the ball with both feet
• Develop good training habits
• Make training fun and competitive
• Dribbling to develop the function of moves

Low Priority:
• Finishing
• Receiving balls out of the air

Player Expectations:

• Players confident enough to take risks with the ball in training and game situations
• 25 juggles in one minute

Age Group Priorities for Soccer Learning


The U11 age group continues the training priorities created in the U10 age group. However, the main focus of this age group is the 1v1 dual between players. High pressure will be introduced earlier in the sessions. Players will participate in an 9 v 9 format.

High Priorities:
• Advanced Dribbling to beat the defender
• Passing/receiving - 1st touch
• Finishing

Low Priority
• Recieving balls out of the air
• Combination play (2v1; 2v2)
• Communication

Player Expectations:

• Passing/receiving for distance
• Striking the ball with both feet
• 50 juggles in one minute


The U12 age group is an overlap of the U11 age group and every session will encompass the continued development of individual skill on the ball. However, the main focus is the introduction of play within small groups. Playing format is 9 v 9.

High Priorities:
• Passing/receiving and striking the ball (for distance, crossing; flighted balls)
• Combination play (2v1, 2v2, 3v2, 3v3) when to pass vs when to dribble
• Small Group Defending - Lose it get it back; everyone attacks everyone defends
• Communication

Low Priority:
• Possession with a purpose
• Penetration and shape
• Making the field bigger with longer passes and movement of the ball

Player Expectations:

• Hit and receive a driven ball
• 75 juggles in one minute

U-13 Soccer - 12 Years Old - Focus of Training


At the U13 Age Group there is still an emphasis on small group play. However, it begins a simple introduction to larger group play. The playing format is 11v11 at this age group.

High Priorities:
• Possession with a purpose (as a means to an end).
• Penetration Play
• Attacking Shape
• Advanced combination play (short-short-long, up-back-thru, 3rd man runs).
• Defending Shape

Low Priority:
• Changing the Point of Attack
• Attacking Rhythm of Play
• Speed of Play


At the U14 Age Group, the focus is now squarely upon large group play and finding success within the full game (11v11). While individual player development is still important, the roles within the team and overall team development has now come to the forefront.

High Priorities:
• Rhythm of Play
• Speed of Play
• Large Group Defensive Tactics (high pressure, low pressure, pressing)
• Advanced combination play

Low Priority:
• Zonal Defending
• Playing in Thirds of the Field

Training focus for U-14 Youth Soccer Players