Short Passing: Outside of the Foot Swerve Pass

outside-foot-swerve-pass-220Swerve passes, played with the outside of the foot (young players understand this area as the ‘little toe’) are much easier to disguise than push passes because the passer’s body shape is a lot more closed throughout the movement.

The ball swerves because spin is applied to the pass, this means outside arch passes can be used to ‘bend’ the ball around defenders.

Outside of the Foot Swerve Passes can also be played whilst running, without breaking stride.

This means that a well-timed swerve pass can catch the defence off-guard and release a teammate. Watch Zinedine Zidane’s perfect example in the short video at the bottom of this post.

With practice this technique can be developed and used for long passes and as a useful finishing technique.

Technique – Coaching Points


  • Plant your non-kicking foot slightly behind the ball and far enough to the side to allow a full swing of your kicking leg. Both the knee and foot of your non-kicking leg should be pointed a few degrees away from your target.
  • Keep your head steady with your eyes looking down at the point of contact on the ball.
  • Turn your kicking foot and your knee across your body. Point your toes down slightly and ‘lock’ your ankle.
  • Strike the ball with the outside of your foot – find the flat surface near where your little toe starts.
  • Point of contact on the ball is just to the inside of centre and halfway up (the horizontal midline). Kicking off-centre makes the ball spin away from your foot and gives the ball its bend/swerve. Kicking through the horizontal midline keeps the ball on the floor.
  • Kick across the ball and continue your swing up and across your body to add power and more swerve.

Here’s a thing of beauty for you to enjoy:

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