Wembley launch for FA grassroots coaching blueprint

Football coaches from across the spectrum of the game have gathered at Wembley Stadium today as the FA launch a new blueprint for the future of football coaching in England.

England managers Fabio Capello, Hope Powell and Stuart Pearce will join over 600 grassroots coaches at the launch of The Future Game, a technical document aimed at developing a new generation of young players through age- appropriate football coaching.

The coaches, all members of the FA’s Coaching Association (FACA), will hear from England’s senior coaches along with Sir Trevor Brooking and Blackburn manager Sam Allardyce.

A lucky handful have also been selected to participate in a coaching session on Wembley’s hallowed turf, aimed at bringing The Future Game to life.

Brooking, the FA’s Director of Football Development, said that in the wake of FIFA’s decision on the 2018 World Cup, nurturing the future of the game is more crucial to the FA than ever.

“After the disappointment of last week’s World Cup Bid decision, it’s more important than ever that we concentrate on the future of football development of our young players and a strong coaching workforce behind them.

“If we want to create decent young players, we need coaches who can engage children in the game and make them fall in love with football.

The Future  Game is about giving players a positive experience of football – an experience which captures their imagination, ignites their enthusiasm and keeps them hungry to learn.”

The Future Game – which follows a professional version of the document published in May this year (left) – highlights the differences between the game at grassroots and professional level, whilst providing practical advice and theory for coaches of players of all ages and all abilities.

Designed for coaches and teachers, the guide addresses issues around skill development, competitiveness in youth football and the environment in which best to educate young players in supportive and challenging way.

The Future Game document is presented as a box-set and contains a guide to the FA’s coaching philosophy, coaching theory advice, over 200 age-appropriate session plans for practical use and a DVD outlining the coaching pathway and opportunities for coaches of all abilities.

The document is available to buy at www.TheFALearningShop.com priced £29.99 plus postage & packing.

Club Website will bring you more from the Future Game Conference and the speakers attending, so watch this space!

Dan Pope, Club Website editor

Have your say: Is The Future Game the right way forward?

What do you think about The Future Game? Is it good to have a coaching blueprint specifically for the game’s grassroots? If you are a youth coach, do you feel part of the bigger picture for the future of the national game?

Do you intend to buy the document?  And what do you think of the price? Is forking out over £30 too much or is that a bargain for all of the coaching advice contained in the document?

Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

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Dan Pope
Writer at Teamer
Freelance writer, editor and copywriter, with a passion for grassroots sport. A right back turned football writer, Dan is the former editor of Club Website and has been lucky enough to work in the field of grassroots and community sport for the last 10 years.

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  1. Grimsby Futsal Leagu on December 17, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    I read part of the draft document, the word futsal was not included. Scientific evidence backs the game as a key development tool.

    Sir Trevor Brooking is aware of futsal having attended FA National Championships.

    The countries that dominate the Jules Rimet Trophy also dominate futsal. Brazil, Argentina, Italy and new kids on the block Spain.

    If your cars leaking oil, you don’t change the tyres!

  2. Tony Bedford on December 17, 2010 at 4:11 pm

    I’ve got the professional version of the Future game book. It is good, but I would have liked to seen a DVD included showing the sessions in progress. Sometimes picking up expected outcomes etc, is easier that way (like the FA youth appropriate sessions that get ran)

    It doesn’t look like the DVD which is getting supplied with this 2nd version has that either.

  3. Scott Buchanan on December 17, 2010 at 11:24 pm

    With all the money in the game, the FA should make sure some of this money goes proper size goals and pitches for 11 year olds. They go from 7 a side to 11 a side at this age but most have to play on mens pitches and full size goals. These are far to big. Also i think they should go to 9 a side at this age then on to 11 a side at under 13. Spend more on grassroots level and make it more appertising for the young to take part. Only then will you get the benefit from it. These are only some of my ideas, i have so many more.

  4. Alec Longhurst on December 19, 2010 at 1:40 pm

    I’ve coached at grassroots football for over 11 years and hopefully, during that time, I’ve coached the exciting and skilful elements of the game. However, not once has anyone from the FA ever come to see me, or my coaching methods. And for me there’s the problem. The FA are happy to put lots of new coaches into the system, but are they checking and educating the coaches themselves close up? No, in my opinion they’re not! I’ve seen many examples of fantastic ‘well-meaning’ individuals throughout those 11 years, but many are not providing good coaching.

    To the FA I say this “Don’t just use fancy words (or just graduates) – get real passionate people out into the community and coach the coaches close up and personally.”

  5. Simon Gibson on December 20, 2010 at 6:34 pm

    I agree a lot with Alec & Scott. From what i’ve seen i personally believe the majority of people who get involved in the younger and youth sides tend to be dads who have a son in the team. The have no formal qualification or tend to go on what they know from when they played. I’m only 36 and gave up playing 4 yrs ago due to injury. I was asked by the then manager to help out with training. In the summer i joined an u21 team on the coaching side and realise that these guys are very impressionable and could still possibly make it at some level with the right guidance but i don’t feel i have the right tools or courses to enable me to be a better coach for these lads which frustrates me because i have no kids, i’m comitted to a mon/wed/sat and more importantly i have passion for the grassroots game. In Scotland you can do a 12hr course over 2 days whch is an introduction to Club Coach (Adult) which i did for £45 (SFA Ran) The next course up from that is Level 2 UEFA Basic Licence Int Course – £900 11 day course !!! So wheres the bridging of gaps there. I’ve had my eyes opened to the very young grassroots level in the last 6months and the club i’m involved in has age groups from the age of 5 – 21. I personally think the ex pro’s need to be more pro-active in getting involved rather than worrying about how to spend their millions or running some pub or taxi firm. With more qualified coaches & pro’s affiliated with these fantasic kids clubs the better chnace of raising the bar and development.

  6. Frank on December 28, 2010 at 5:41 pm

    Having been invloved for over 20yrs coaching juniors and recently adults,the F.A. must realise that like me there are thousands of volonteers who pay money out of their own pockets to help provide FREE coaching at junior football clubs.
    With all the money going into football surely if the F.A. consider this manual to be important it should be provided free of charge to all Charter Standard Clubs.

  7. Bill on June 17, 2011 at 2:18 am

    Maybe the answer is not to get the old pros involved with the kids. To solve this problem, you might need a different mindset from the one that created the problem in the first place. (I think Einstein said that!). What Brooking wants need to start at the grassroots and is not in the Anglo-Saxon football DNA. To say a sea-change in thinking is needed is an understatement.

  8. Paul on November 23, 2011 at 2:38 am

    I think the fa should put coaching videos online and allow everyone to access them for free.
    Ideally they would include guidance for setting up each coaching drill in advance.
    There is so much enthusiasm as grass roots level for coaching but the fa gives parents, teachers and coaches at local clubs no support.
    Give them the tools they need to run better football sessions and the improvement would raise the bar at every level in the game.

  9. Bob on November 25, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    In England there are currently 2800 Ueafa A an B licence Coaches (level 3) almost exclusivley coaching at proffesional level.

    Numbers of A and B Licence Holders

    Spain 23,995
    Italy 29,420
    Germany 34,970
    France 17,568
    England 2,800

    We need to start taking coaching to a higher level. I coach grassroots football to U7-U10s most of the coaching is see is poor to pitifull I am doing a level course early next year and aim to gain a level 3 within the next 18 months to 2 years. We need more and better coaches in England the ratio of level 3 coaches to players at all levels is around 1 :800 in Italy its around 1:17

  10. Ada Topley on November 28, 2011 at 3:00 pm

    Rapidly approaching the Golden age of 50. I have been involved in football since the age of 7 playing at local boys level and now still able to tie my boots as a veteran !! I am not a coach and dont profess to be, however having spent much of my younger training days running up hills etc. recognise that so many of you have given so much without little returned in way of support / financial aid.
    The beautifull game is worth millions, the only way forward to develop youngsters is development at minimal / no cost to the youngsters themselves, the majority of footballs greatest have come from humble backgrounds.
    On a visit to Australia I witnessed teh public parks, floodlit in the evenings for all Children to go to free of charge and sign up to their choses sport, Football / Ausie rules stuff / Rugby / Hockey, the lot.
    3 nights a week for 2 hours Children from the age of 4 to 17 had free coaching/ free facilities / Good facilities and Trained qualified Coaches. The results in towns are evident, no / little vandalism / low crime etc. And why, because the kids are occupied that reduces so many other costs to the local communities. Their inverstment is in Sport and the results are again evident, they are competitive / committted and generally are a good sporting nation. Why dont we simply Invest in our Coaches / local communities / and get the Kids off the streets and back in the parks. The money is available, again like in most circles of life, its always spent in the wrong places by the wrong people.

  11. Rod Henbury on July 13, 2013 at 9:25 pm

    Ada still playin footy fair play .I played on the other wing with u at Mount pleasant FC Mick walsh,s. Hope u are a better coach than Mick was
    Regards ROD

  12. Rod Henbury on July 13, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    Alec still speaking like the captain/leader I see never lost for words. More ex players should enrol for coaching Acamedy courses their, Too much emphasis in general is focused on fitness, diet and phsycology.We need to bring back the focus on ball skills and basic movement and team work ,watch Brazil they cover each other and fill postions when they are vacant on the pitch like the dutch team in the 70,s.Skill and technique need to be encouraged the power and fitness will come with training well.
    regards Rod Henbury ( ex Mount Pleasant winger) remember Alec !

  13. Alec on January 15, 2014 at 10:40 pm

    Well said Rod…..and nice to see you still care!

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