Penalty Kick Given! Are You Stepping Up or Hidding Behind Your Teammates?

penalty kick, penalty shot, shootout, shooting, soccer training

A Penalty Kick is as good as a goal, or is it? Some are born for these nerve racking moments where the entire team is expecting and depending on them. Although it may seem easy to hit a dead ball from 12 yards away into a massive goal, it’s much easier said then done. Even seasoned pro's miss a pk now and then, the pressure, indecision and overthinking of it can lead a player to failure.

So a penalty shot is given when a player is fouled inside the opponents box. The ball is then placed 12 yards away and a player from the team shoots the ball on goal after the referee's whistle. Pretty simple right? Wrong! It takes a touch of class especially in the big games to come through, sometimes the simplest things in life can be the most difficult.

Why Is A Penalty Kick Effortless at Practice But Not During Actual Games?

Even though there may be no difference with the ball, distance, goal size, field and equipment during a penalty shot from practice to a game, plenty still changes.

The “moment” and “situation” is what changes. It’s easy to hit a penalty well in practice when nothing is on the line and a miss means virtually nothing. When it’s game time and there are people watching your every step and the fate of your team rides on your shoulders the whole dynamic of the penalty changes.

This is the reason that some believe practicing penalties does you no good. Because nothing can emulate the situation of do or die. Others feel that practicing them like anything else is a skill that can be developed. Whatever your philosophy you better have ice running through your veins if you’re gonna slot one in.

Do Pro’s Ever Miss A Penalty Kick?

You bet they do. It’s not as much about skill then it is mental strength and luck. Riquelme, Beckham, Totti, Zidane and the list goes on and on when you talk about world class players and penalty misses.

If you’ve every missed a penalty shot and are beating yourself up about it, you’re not the only one. At any level penalty shots run havoc on a players mental state and as the stakes rise, so does the pressure of the shot.

Is it Better for Your Team to Shoot First or Second in a Penalty Kick Shootout?

Well there are two schools of thought here.

1. Shooting first puts the pressure on the other team.

2. If shooting second then you know what the result of your goal or miss means.

There really is no right or wrong here. Two schools of thought, if you were to ask me, I like to shoot second and have all the pressure to perform.

Can You Pass it to a Teammate During a Penalty Kick?

Actually you can. But only if the penalty is taken within a game and not during a penalty shootout.

If the shooter passes the ball forward a yard or so and a teammate runs in after he has touched they can put it in. This is extremely risky and in my opinion foolish considering you already have enough of an advantage from twelve yards out why over complicate it.

This is rarely ever done in the modern game but use to be done more often years back.

Can You Score Off of a Rebound from a PK?

Again, the answer is yes. But only under certain circumstances. First it has to be a pk that’s taken during a game and it must touch another player first (like the goalie) before you can hit it again. Off the post doesn’t count, somebody else much touch it first.

So for example, it actually happens quite commonly. A player steps up to shoot a pk, the goalie saves it, the ball comes back to the player who shot it or another player running in and they shoot again and score. Poor keeper can’t catch a break.

Things to Remember about taking a PK:

-Pick your spot before you shoot and go with it

-Confidence is everything, believe you can and will score

-Don't be fooled by the goalie playing tricks by dancing on the line etc.

-Imagine the ball going in the goal before you shoot, see the ball go in

-No daisy cutters here, hit the ball like you want to score, not like you don't want to miss

-Inside of the foot or laces is up to you but whichever you decide aim small, miss small

If you ever in your life, and you will, get into a situation where you're involved in a penalty shootout be ready for the emotional rollercoaster.

Penalty Kick shootouts are engraved in every players head especially the ones you lose. You need to remember that a penalty shot is 80/20 mental. Everybody and their brother can hit a ball 12 yards but with the pressure and the moment getting to you a lot can change in a small matter of time.

If you're the type of player that loves it all on their shoulders or has nerves of steel then you were born for moments like these. This is not the time to try things or be all fancy, pick your spot, hit the ball like you mean it and hope for the best.

If you strike the ball where you firmly and where you want but the keeper comes up with a big save you can tip your hat to him at least. The worst thing is going up there and allowing the moment to get the best of you and not hitting your shot or missing the goal. You'll be losing some sleep over it if things don’t go your way. Hit the ball with some authority, no regrets.

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