Attacker Defender Goalkeeper (ADG) is an alternative to the penalty shootout.* ADG features a series of ten contests where an attacker has 30 seconds to score a goal against a defender and a goalkeeper. At the completion of the contests, the team with the most goals is the winner. You can read a brief explanation of ADG, or download the complete ADG Document.

The advantages of ADG include:

  1. All players compete
  2. Showcases skill and athleticism
  3. Positive natured competition
  4. Strategy is vital
  5. Promotes attacking play
  6. Promotes fair play

The penalty shootout is an inherently unfair tie-breaker with the team kicking first having a greater than 60% chance of winning.1 The reason is because the team kicking second is usually playing catch-up and therefore experiences greater pressure with each kick. Incredibly, nine consecutive penalty shootouts were won by the team kicking first at the FIFA World Cup during a period from Japan/Korea 2002 to Brazil 2014.

After leading his team to the 2016 Copa América final, Lionel Messi missed his penalty in the shootout and Argentina were defeated. Football is the only the sport in the world that has designed and implemented a tie-breaker that delights in crucifying its heroes. Let's all hope Messi doesn't suffer from the long-term psychological trauma others have experienced.

That Copa América final together with the most recent finals of the European Championship, UEFA Champions League and FIFA World Cup produced a total of just four goals. All four matches went into extra-time, with two ultimately decided by penalties. Four major finals and 480 minutes of football produced just four goals. That's just one goal every two hours!

Unlike the penalty shootout, ADG provides a tie-breaker format where fans are assured spectacular and exhilarating goals. Would you rather watch a player like Ronaldo or Neymar walk up and convert a penalty kick to win a major competition, or watch them at full speed, swerve past a defender and bend the ball into the back of the net? However, ADG isn't just about the attacking players, it also gives defenders and goalkeepers equal opportunity to shine.

The undeniable benefit of ADG is that it combines the skill and athleticism of modern football with the inherent drama and tension of the penalty shootout. Most importantly, ADG provides a competitive environment where the superior football team will ultimately claim victory.

* While Kicks from the penalty mark is the official name, this website will use - penalty shootout. And penalty kick shootout, penalties or just shootout, will be used interchangeably.

"Penalties are awful, unfair, but what else is there?"

Laurent Blanc
Former French Player