- Always keep an eye for the runner aka the striker from the opposing team who will make a run towards your D-box via left/right side or even in the middle. As a last man of the team, the defender has to keep a watchful eye on the runner and never let him get the through pass or a high lobbing pass.
- While defending, it’s important to pressure and mark your opposing team’s striker. Giving him too much space will lead to your opponent getting a pass from his team-mates. Always keep a tight pressure and mark on the striker at all times. The term ‘shadow’ means to follow him and pressure him. *Do not attempt to steal the ball (See below points). Just stick to him as a shadow about 1 meter from him. Marking too closely would be a problem if the opposing player manages to twist/turn/cut you on your side. Thus, too close marking is a no-no. Too far marking also is a no-no as well, because, that isn’t ‘marking’ in the first place.
- Never ever go for a tackle except those which you are 100% sure that you will get the ball. It’s a HUGE sin for defender to react first because the opposing member can read your movement and move to the opposite direction of your challenge/tackle. Always anticipate and wait for the opponent to move, then only you go for the tackle. By doing this, you can improve your tackle and ball stealing rate by ALOT!
- Watch the ball and not the opponent’s body. Always keep your eye on the ball cause you want to tackle for the ball and not the player. Body movement is often used by players to provide a dummy to confuse defenders into the path of movement. Often times defenders get fooled by the dummy moves done with body and often they use a fake move to cheat the defender into believing they are going on one way but goes to another.
- Never stand straight while defending. This is a major no-no. Always stand side ways either right or left depending on the opponent’s movement of the ball. Standing straight will cause to delay in chasing after the opponent after he has cut passed you. Always stand sideways – ever ready to run back either left of right. And also, never ever leave your legs opened up too big as this will be exploited by opponent in giving you a nutmeg (ball-thru-between-ya-two-leg @ panna @ ole @ 20cent @ kangkang). Do not chase the player with the ball, skip this by moving in a arch shape via d-box line. If the player is moving in from the side either left or right, don’t follow! Just move back and cover the d-box angle. This will save you time.
- Positioning and anticipate and cutting a pass or through pass aka LURING. This is one of the most important part as being a DEFENDER. Aside from man marking, positioning and anticipate while luring is THE MOST IMPORTANT technique and tactic for a defender to steal a pass.
- Use your goalie as a safety assurance when you are being pressured. Always fully utilize the goalie if you find yourself cornered and all your passing options are closed. *Reminder: do keep the KEEPER RESTRICTIONS regulation in mind though, while applying this concept – know what might result in a foul.First, the defender has to position himself quite far apart from striker or flanker but not too far. REMEMBER this is not man marking! This is LURING the opposing players to have an impression that their striker/flankers are unmarked, thus when the pass is played or a through pass is played, your job is to cut in a 45 degree angle to intercept the pass/through pass. To perfect this baiting and luring technique requires time and practice and also fast movement and anticipation. “Psycho” your opponent in giving them false assumption and lure them. Quick feet movement and fast body reactions are required to be perfected to fully utilize this technique.
- Always pass! Don’t try to be the hero in trying to dribble and beat opponents if you are the last man defending. If you screw up and the opposing team gets the ball, your goalie will curse you to hell! As well as your fellow team-mates.
- Don’t be afraid in getting forward! Defenders can always act as flankers and also a holding midfielder. Always utilize a 1-2 play to get yourself forward into the middle area fast!
Always keep and eye to your flank and striker to release a pass/through pass early. Whenever there is an instance where your team-mates are unmarked, quickly release the ball to them via pass/through pass. Always be alert.
- Defenders do not only act as a “DEFENDER” but often time are also the “PLAYMAKER” in the futsal game. By practicing passes, defenders are a team’s playmaker and chance-creator by giving ‘threat-balls’ to your flank and your striker. And most of the time the ball are in your control and every decision making move are basically in the hands of the players who are closest to the goalie.
Hopefully some of this tips might prove useful for you all.
- During my lifetime of decades in playing futsal I came across this book which helped me the most in improving myself in all areas of futsal. The most important aspect to me in futsal is not to be the best defender or striker or midfielder. It simply does not exist in futsal, you have to be an all rounder. An all rounder not only physically but mentally as well. You can only help yourself with the physical part. I can only provide you 50% of your development by providing the mindset which is the mental part. Ready to prepare yourself mentally to reach greater heights? Then this book by Greg Ferguson is the one for you.