Defensive wall

A line of two or more players standing next to each other forming a straight line in front of an opponent’s free-kick. The main purpose of this wall is to make it more difficult for the opponent to score a goal. The wall must be at least 10 yards away from the ball.

When a free-kick is close to the penalty area the defensive team’s goalkeeper will usually form the wall and instruct his teammates on how to set up. Defensive walls are also often used for free kicks that are not close to the opposition penalty area but usually formed with fewer players.

What are the advantages of a Defensive wall?

The 3 main advantages are:

  1. A defensive wall can block the vision of the free-kick taker making it harder for them to see all of the goal.
  2. A defensive wall can reduce the opponent’s options when deciding how to play the set-piece, whether to shoot at goal or pass to a teammate.
  3. A defensive can also make it difficult for the opponent to kick the ball at full power as they have to try and place the ball more accurately, thus making it easier for the goalkeeper to save.