If you can’t control the ball, you can’t do anything.
This article will cover the four touches you need to control the ball and some tips to improve your ball control.
The 4 Types of Soccer Touches
Use the lace touch to dribble forward or diagonally.
You will dribble quicker with the lace touch than the inside touch. Use it to move into open space.
To perform a lace touch, lift up your knee, point your foot downward, lock your ankle, then touch the ball with your laces.
Use the inside touch to move horizontally, turn, and to dribble while shielding the ball (covered in our article, How to Dribble a Soccer Ball).
To perform an inside touch, move your leg outward slightly, lock your ankle, then touch the ball with the middle of the inside of your foot.
The ball should go across your body. If the ball goes too far in front of you or too close to you, adjust the angle of your foot.
Use the outside touch to accelerate past defenders, turn, and cut to the side.
This touch is quick and choppy like the lace touch.
To perform an outside touch, move your leg inward slightly, lock your ankle, then touch the ball with the middle of the outside of your foot.
The soul touch is used to turn, beat defenders, and move in all directions.
The soul touch is underused. I’ve seen great players use this touch to devastate defenses. It’s the hardest touch to master, but learning it is worthwhile.
To perform a sole touch, put your foot lightly on the ball. Roll the ball to the side. Perform a small hop with your other foot while rolling the ball. To use the sole touch to move forward, turn your body to the side.