Overview of Playing Foosball Defense:
There are numerous foosball defense styles you will see different players use in foosball. Foosball Soccer recommends learning all of these styles in order to be able to change up your defensive style during each game. This will throw off your opponent and give you an advantage of predicting their next move and timing it properly. Also, as you begin to learn more about the different foosball shots and offense, you will become more versed in the defensive side of the game. This is why every one of our foosball shots pages have a section called, "Reading the Defense" before you can completely master a shot.
Learn the Basic Foosball Defense:
The most basic style of defense is a technique that will work against any beginner or intermediate player is extremely simple and easy to learn. The two diagrams below will show you how this basic foosball defense formation works. Basically, the idea is to tilt your defensive bars so your men are angled inwards toward one another. Just remember not to tilt your defensive men so much that a ball can slide under your toe. The diagram below on the left will show you how this basic foosball defense formation will cut off diagonal foosball angles from common shots like bank shots and spray shots. Simply leaving your men straight up and down vertically like the diagram shown on the right will allow more shots to score on your defense at an angle.
Tilted Men Foosball Defense vs. Straight Foosball Defense Formation:
Other Foosball Defense Tips:
- Move your 2 defense rods together as one solid defensive unit. Make sure your defensive players do not overlap one another and try to avoid crossing back and forth. You can space your defensive men slightly apart in a formation so there is not enough width for the ball to go between your foosball men. This small gap (about 60-70% of a ball width) between your men can make a huge impact if you use this technique correctly.
- Always be playing defense technique. Your job while playing defense is to always follow the ball no matter where it is on the table. A lot of beginner players when learning to play defense get distracted or don't realize that a lot of reflected shots can be blocked simply by following the ball on the table. If the ball is on the left side of the table and your partner has the ball on offense, your men should be too! Your men should be constantly moving if you are doing this properly.
- For one on one games, you can use your thumb and pinkie finger on your left hand to play both of your defensive rods at one time. You will have to hold the actual rod right in front of
the handle but not the actual handle in
order to get a good grip. This formation will come in handy when your opponent is taking shots from the defensive side of the table. Learn this tip and use it with the technique above for maximum effectiveness.
- Avoid ricochets and bounces off your defense. The most annoying goals are the ones that can be avoided with a few defensive fundamentals. If you have a 3 man goalie rod like many Tornado foosball tables, you will notice that numerous shots will hit your 2 outside foosball men that are not even in front of the goal. Remember that these men are strictly to keep the ball in play and are not used to defend any shots. By simply tilting your men backwards when obvious shots are going to hit the wall, it will avoid accidental bounces from hitting your men and scoring on yourself. Instead, let the ball hit the wall and catch the foosball with your 2 bar defense rod.
- Vary your movements and patterns. When playing defense against more advanced players, it is important to learn to alternate your defensive movements and patterns in order to distract and make your defense more unpredictable. The mental portion of foosball defense cannot be overlooked.
- Never shoot from your middle goalie defensive man.
Your objective in playing foosball defense is to always limit the percentage your opponent has to score. That being said, if you are playing the game strategically there is no reason why you should ever shoot from your center
man on the defense 3 rod. This shot has an increased percentage of
getting foosed by your opponent than any other shot on the foosball soccer table because you are positioned directly in front of the goal. Instead of using this man to shoot, you should be positioning him in a position to block any potential foos shots that could be rebounded your way.
- You don't need to cover the entire goal technique. This is sometimes also referred to as a zone formation defense. The
goal is a total of 5.8 widths of the ball, but this defensive tip will show you that you don't need to completely defend all 5 holes. Think about it while looking at the diagram below. Please also note that your man's toe is the same width as a foosball. If you have a foosball defensive man covering 50% of hole 1 and 50% of hole 2, a straight shot towards either hole will still be deflected. What is the point in covering all of hole 1 and none of hole 2 with this man? The only disclaimer to this tip is for spray shots and bank shots that come in at angles that can take advantage of this zone defense technique. Watch your opponent to see if you can take advantage of this tip.
Foosball Defense Diagram:
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