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SIDE VOLLEY - Winning Goalkeeping Skills for Ages 14+. Former Division 1 goalkeeper and experienced soccer coach Brian Galvin explains an essential piece of goalkeeper training, the side volley. This skill allows a keeper to find their midfielders and forwards very quickly and accurately, giving the opposing team's defenders much less time to intercept the pass. The side volley is often the first step in a successful counter attack. By ... driving the ball much lower to the ground than a traditional punt, it reaches its destination much faster and often allows the receiving teammate to take it at their feet or chest, rather than having to battle for a header. Repetition is very important for learning this skill. Two goalkeepers can practice this efficiently by standing about half a field apart and side volleying the ball back and forth, or a goalkeeper and a field player can do the same allowing the field player to practice their long balls.