The Best Soccer Tricks & Moves

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The greatest soccer players in the world can do amazing things with the soccer ball. Their artistry often leads to sensational goals that end up on highlight reels around the world. Though some slick moves are once-in-a-lifetime examples that may never be duplicated, there are several tricks that, when mastered, often lead to plays that delight and amaze spectators.

Deft Dribbling

  • Fancy footwork is critical for a skill player in a game of soccer. The better a player can dribble down the field, the greater his chances of eluding defenders and creating scoring chances. Players have several types of dribbles to choose from, but one of the most elusive is the "step over" dribble. This involves crossing one foot over the top of the ball in an attempt to fool the defender. A player can do this any number of times before continuing to move forward. The step over dribble makes it difficult for a defender to know when the ball will be moved forward. A good ball-handler will see when a defender is about to make her move, then advance the ball quickly with the other foot to gain valuable field position.

Curling Free Kick

  • The curling free kick is one of the most dazzling plays in soccer. It most commonly occurs when the offensive team is awarded a free kick near the opposition goal. In this instance, the defense usually puts up a human wall of 4-to-6 players in an attempt to block the kicker's path to the goal. Free kick specialists such as David Beckham and Roberto Carlos have mastered the art of "bending" the ball around the wall and into the corner of the net, where the goalkeeper has a difficult time making the save. The ball arcs around the wall of players before curving back toward the net. Because the goalkeeper can't see around his defense, he can see the ball only after it has passed the wall. On a well-placed free kick, the 'keeper has no time to stop the ball from going into the net.

Bicycle Kick

  • The bicycle kick, also known as a scissors kick, is one of the riskiest offensive moves in soccer. To execute a successful bicycle kick, the player must stand with her back to the opposing goal. As the ball is played in to her, she elevates so that her feet are up in the air while the upper half of her body is close to the ground. The jump must be timed so that the player can kick the ball with her strong leg while she is still elevated. If done properly, the result is a powerful kick that will often catch opposing defenders and goalkeepers by surprise.

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  • Photo Credit soccer ball image by Jakub Cejpek from Fotolia.com
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