Goalkeeper’s distribution from hands

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Goalkeeper’s distribution from hands

The goalkeeper is the last line of defense, but also the first line of attack.  ( Hence the name of the Goalkeeping glove, L1 )

The goalkeeper, through distribution, can dictate the tempo of the game

Distribution accounts for for than 60% of goalkeepers role. *

Distribution from hands accounts for around 16% of distribution *


Used for short distances. Must have some zip to it to avoid interceptions, but not bouncing as this is difficult for your outfield players to control.


Used for slightly longer distances. This throw is designed with quickness in mind. Having made a catch, the javelin throw is used to set up a counter attack. Called Javelin as the bent arm action resembles throwing a Javelin. A low stance and a flick of the wrist creating spin on the ball helps reduce a bounce which is then difficult for players to control.


Can be used in two ways

1 – Up and over opposition players that have committed forward

2 – Fast distribution to a player that is quite a distance away

As with other methods, this throw must be low and fast with minimal bounce.

This video shows Tim Howard using an overarm throw to set up Landon Donovan’s World Cup Goal


More examples of overarm throws:




All methods of distribution need the following three things from the goalkeeper.

  • Decision of distribution
  • Communication to give an instruction
  • Support by following the ball

I will not be coaching this bizarre yet effective throwing technique shown here


* Based on English FA study of Women’s Euro Championship
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