POSITIONING – Explain positions on the 3v3 field; keep one back defensively for counter attacks, have one move high for an outlet pass when your team wins possession, but don’t designate those responsibilities to specific players. Simply explain that there needs to be someone there.
The beauty and excitement of 3v3 is the constant movement and interaction; a player starts the game as a defender or forward but should constantly be finding himself or herself in other positions.
OFFENSE – Put an emphasis on shooting when within shooting distance. Take opportunities as they are given to you. The purpose of passing the ball around on offense is to catch a defender out of their goal-side positioning. It’s not 11v11. Scoring is high and possession changes are frequent, so don’t be afraid to lose possession from taking a high percentage shot.
DEFENSE – Each player should be in goal-side positioning. There are no goalies, but there is a marked area around the goal players cannot cross. With that in mind, naturally the first step in preventing a goal should be positioning the 1st defender directly between the goal and the offensive player in possession of the ball. The other players should provide some sort of cover in case the first player gets beat. The faster defensive players can transition to pick up marks, goal-side defense, and balance cover, the less chance there is of them being score on.
ATTITUDE – Attitude plays an enormous factor in 3v3. It’s important to stay positive and work hard at all times. Because of the nature of the game, comebacks are more likely than not. With a high work rate a 3 goal deficit can quickly become a tie game or turned around into a lead. This is especially important to remember when talking to players on the bench and at halftime. Remember as the game continues players will get tired, making teams more mistake prone and goals more likely.
…And, most importantly in 3v3, have fun!