Coaching Clinics Coerver

New Coerver Coaching Munster Dates

Coerver Youth Diploma Courses to be held in Munster this summer.

Carrick United AFC

  • Location: Carrick United AFC, Carrick On Suir
  • Dates: June 21st & June 22nd
  • Delivered by Austin Speight
  • Time: 10am – 4pm
  • Cost: per coach is €229 which includes Coursework & 5 DVD Box Set (RRP €69.99)

Blarney United

  • Location: Blarney United FC, Cork
  • Dates: August 9th & 10th
  • Delivered by Scott Wright
  • Time: 10am – 4pm
  • Cost: per coach is €229 which includes Coursework & 5 DVD Box Set (RRP €69.99)

Note: As these are the first Diploma’s to be held in Munster, they have received several confirmations along with significant interest already so they strongly advise you to book your places ASAP. Places at both venues will be limited, so bookings will only be reserved on receipt of payment.

To book online and for further information about the course and the Coerver staff delivering the courses go to Coerver Coaching Munster

Course Overview

The purpose of the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma is to give attendees, whether you are a professional academy coach, junior coach, teacher or parent a greater understanding of how to plan & deliver more effective coaching sessions.

This will be made possible by learning to use the New Coerver® Coaching Session Planner which will provide a quick & easy solution for all attendees who would like to construct weekly, monthly or even season long programmes using proven, high quality drills & games from Coerver® Coaching, “The Worlds’s Number 1 Soccer Skills Teaching Method”.

Coaches – What you get

  1. Drills and games developed over our 30 year history, that you can use to build sessions for many seasons using the NEW Coerver® Coaching Session Planner.
  2. The secrets Coerver® Coaching have used over the last 30 years to establish themselves as “The World’s Number One Soccer Skills Teaching Method”
  3. Essential tips on how to improve your coaching & make your sessions more effective

The Coerver ® Coaching Youth Diploma is a 2-day course that has been broken down into 4 modules that will be presented through lecture presentations & practical demonstrations:

  • Module 1 – The Coerver® Approach To Coaching
  • Module 2 – The Coerver® Curriculum
  • Module 3 – Coerver® Session Planning for your Season
  • Module 4 – Coerver® Tips To Be A Better Coach

Youth Diploma Attendee Quotes

Jose Morais, First Team Coach – Real Madrid CF

“These last two days on the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course certainly made me a better coach, I have been a fan of Coerver® for many years”.

 Carl Lander, Assistant Head Teacher – St Aubyns School, Essex

“The foundations of great teaching have always been championed by Coerver® who have taken football and created a system by which any child, through hard work and good teaching can master the basic ball skills, that then lead onto their application in skilful play. We are passionate about our football and the belief that we must develop our players to be the best they can be. The Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma Course has just made this whole job so much easier.”

David Connolly, Southampton FC Striker

“I enjoyed the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course immensely, I feel the course did show me some variations on familiar themes and I enjoyed how both Alf and Scott presented the course”.

Mark Williams, Grassroots Coach – Birmingham

“I thought the Youth Diploma course was excellent, Coerver® is the building block on which all football should be taught. I thoroughly enjoyed the course and it has really encouraged me to want to become a better coach”.

Richard Beale, Reserve Team Manager – Birmingham City FC

“I thoroughly enjoyed the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course, and would recommend that all coaches working with young players should attend”.

Contact: If you need further information contact or Call 087 689 1327


pdf_poster_youth_diploma 2014

I always like to hear your opinions. Please comment below or email me or if, you don’t have anything to add then please forward this on to a friend.

Thanks for reading.

I’m also on twitter @Coachdiary

Irish Grassroots Football

Time to start again..

What a couple of weeks in Irish football. Let’s not fool ourselves it was coming for along time. So, whats next for a game that is so passionately loved in this country, it’s just a pity almost everyone loves the league across the water and turns their back on the one just around the corner.

We are are unique in that we don’t have a professional league, yet we have a international team that competes at the highest stage. We need to start again, implement a ten year plan including growing the LOI, showing it love and attention.. Get rid of the SFAI and all the aul morons that sit on their board and committee, (they are only interested in the blazer) especially the ones that just aren’t interested in change and their are plenty of them – And let’s set up a Youth Association which would branch from the FAI. Those members could then decide if they want to be part of a future plan,  a plan for the future of kids football.

At present everyone is in it for themselves, each has their own agendas and anything suggested for benefit of kids football gets voted down, because everyone has their own agendas to get passed first. Why, are we so different and how did we end up with some many different bodies running kids football. In other countries the football governing body, run football from the worms eye view to senior, only in Ireland it is so different and so incomplete. Personally I feel it’s time the FAI took full responsibility for the game. It unbelievable that they let a body like the SFAI control the most important aspect of a players development and not only that, they make a complete balls of it! i know there are decent men and women involved who truly care but they are few.

The Youth FAI Group would consist of experts from various agencies, including teachers, coaches, paediatrics, child psychologists, former pros and other experts.

John Giles

I was little confused when I heard the great John Giles, talk about the youth game on ‘off the ball’ (Irish Sports Radio programme) on Newstalk last Thursday. He was asked about kids football; he made a reference about two games he’d watched last week- a u13 (I believe he meant u14s) and u19 game and on that basis states that Grassroots football is played the way he should be. He started by saying, “Its was brilliant and a joy to watch” Giles went on to say, “if the international team is doing well, coaches are inclined to copy” Ehh, I don’t think any decent coach would ever copy Irelands style of play at the moment (Under Trap) and he continued to talk about the games he saw, he said they were, “Skilful, with plenty of effort” …..he spoke about International football versus Schoolboy…and said, “I think the two things are being mixed up and a lot of people are putting the two together, they are both two different problems” …and there was me thinking it was just one big problem!!

He said, “Obviously the international problem needs to be solved and then look at the schoolboy football problem”.… he goes onto talking about his experience (the four teams he saw) how excellent the football was…… We all know of plenty of teams, who play nice football and if it is the St Francis u14 team he means, he’s correct, they do play excellent football, but let’s not fool the public John Giles, you are talking about FOUR teams, two games of football, 44 players and your grandsons. The rest of the interview is good, listen half way into the podcast for reference to grassroots etc.

Listen here to the rest of the interview John Giles on OFF THE BALL

What next for Irish football? 

Personally, I feel a complete overall of the grassroots games needed. The FAI should be in full control and from the outside looking in you would think this to be the case, but it’s not. So who is in control? Well, a group established in 1934 called the SFAI run youth football in Ireland, they have full control of it. Ridiculous as it seems; the FAI, from what I can see have no say in how the game is run or what the various league should be doing. This needs to change and change fast. FAI need to take back full control of how the game is run in Ireland. They’re one of very few governing bodies of a sport, that don’t govern the sport from bottom to top.

‘The kids aren’t practicing enough and our system is not helping them to succeed, not allowing the required touches of the ball, to be brilliant players’.


Now is the time to begin again, a ten year plan like the one Germany, Chile and recently Belgium have implemented. A plan where everyone is singing from the same hymn sheet. The FAI recently appointed RUUD DOKTER as the FAI’s new High Performance Director. The Dutchman, who has coached a number of the Netherlands’ underage teams as well as their senior women’s side, replaced compatriot Wim Koevermans after he departed for the Indian national job last summer.

Ruud has also previously coached the Qatar U20s and spent time working in the US. He began  his role on August 1 and look after the men’s programme, with exception of the senior squad, as well as the women’s and underage groups and the Emerging Talent Programme.

So far I have heard good things about the man, with the Emerging Talent Programme high on the agenda for a facelift and some serious tweaking. This man, may also have to step in for the Germany game, which may not be a bad thing.


Europe has four development age categories: the 4-7 year olds, 7-11 year olds, 12-16 year olds and the 17-21 year olds

Emerging Talent Programme

The ETP has 12 centres across Ireland, with an average of 22 players training once a week for 1.5 hours, with a game once a month against another regional centre. Already I’m thinking 22 players, seems a very low number considering the vast amount of kids in Dublin alone that play the game. I also have an issue with the time spent with the players. 1.5 hours a week and in some centres they only get an hour. In this short time, coaches have to get a chat in, try and speak to all the player, do a warm up followed by a session, that’s not enough contact time. Which means we are relying on their clubs to develop them, clubs were in some cases the coach is a parent with a few balls, bibs, cones and no qualifications and in some cases no more interested in developing his/her knowledge of the game.

This can be standard that some of our best kids are left working with.

“the team with the most creative players and players who can dominate the 1vs1 situations all over the field will be the most successful team in the world.”

Another concern is the ET Centres are mostly run by Regional Development Officers and Volunteers who might get an a few bob for helping out. Most RDO’s are stretched beyond belief, which can leave the volunteers to take up some of the sessions. I’m not for a minute doubting the volunteers aren’t capable of running the sessions but there is only so much that people will do for nothing, there is only so much effort you will give without a financial reward. Volunteers themselves are also helping out with more teams. This area of coaching certainly needs to be managed a lot better and with consistency and time.

10,000 hours

I seriously am questioning again our culture and attitude towards development in this country and at the moment the only hope for these players to succeed is Malcolm Gladwells the 10,000 hour rule and their own desire. Which for those you haven’t heard is roughly 20 hours a week, 2.8 hours per day for 10 years, in order to find success, if not perfection in a sport.

‘The three (must have) keys to success in sports are good instruction, practice and repetition, and most importantly – trust in your skills’.

Which leads me to Rene Meulensteen

 Grassroots upThe ET programme starts at 10-16, so they say. I know for a fact that some centres don’t start until u14s and this is to late. We should be monitoring kids from age 10, taking them in at least once a month for at minimum 2 hours at a time. The focus here should be on ball mastery and 1v1’s, playing under pressure, making quick decisions, change of direction, basically everything Coerver teaches. We should also be using these kids for workshops, FAI coaching courses, so that they have every chance to learn.

I’m also concerned with the fact that it ends so early, age 16. We have 12 centres with an average of 22 players, that’s 264 – if the International set-up takes on 22 of these what happens to rest? How are we monitoring their progress? Where do these players go and how are we dealing with the disappointment of not making the grade? Does this fall on the LOI to take in the ones that haven’t made the grade?


Europe has four development age categories: the 4-7 year olds, 7-11 year olds, 12-16 year olds and the 17-21 year olds. I always find it very strange when I hear scouts from English clubs telling kids that if you haven’t made it by 16 (Premier Ambitions)  you won’t make it. Yet in Europe 17-21 is still a development age bracket. We need to be doing more for the 17-21 development age, many players who never ever come through the international set-up have gone on to make it in football. We are definitely losing some of these kids to other sports and possibly sport in general.

Getting back to the LOI, Why don’t we market the LOI, when do you ever hear a LOI player on our national radio or television talking and promoting the game. Every sports bulletin starts with the English result first and the LOI ones last. We can grow our game with a little more marketing, support, love and attention.

Neil Cronin

Former coach Neil Cronin, who has travelled on many occasions with the Cork Schoolboy league said, “Three of our players – Roy Keane, Stephen Ireland, and David Meyler – went on to the premier league and each never received a day’s coaching from the FAI before they captained Cork at the Kennedy Cup”, “There may be a perception that the FAI put all the work into the young players but they only get the white part of the Guinness pint. Clubs and Leagues devote years to preparing players.” Whatever they do or don’t more needs to be done know.

Here is an article about the rift between the SFAI and FAI. ‘FAI votes reveals the level of rift between the SFAI and the FAI” read about it here: Continued infighting within Irish football

“The difficulty lies not in the new ideas but escaping from the old ones” – John Maynard Keynes

Below I have listed some of my ideas and others who have also talked about change.

What I’m thinking (In black) and what others have said (In Blue):

  1. Abolish the SFAI (reform) Select a committee that is not appointed by the FAI but maybe voted in by the leagues. For instance if I wanted to put my name forward, I would be representing my local league. 
  2. Create a new organisation called the Youth FAI, branching from the FAI, under control of the FAI. Many are not in favour of the FAI having control, the leagues can still run their academies but they would have to abide by the plan. Each League would have a presentative working with them make sure they are adopting all the proper development procedures. Those who do will get extra financial funding. 
  3. Implement a ten year NATIONAL plan, look at what Germany, Belgium and Spain have done. The player pathway was introduced many years ago, but it’s not working and looks like its been shelved.
  4. We need to value the SSG and make it much more flexible. More and better players through child-friendly football. Parents should be kept to one area and away from the kids and we don’t need referees. 
  5. Introduce non competition football from u9 to u12s. Start with 3v3 for u8s, 4v4 for u9s, 5v5 for u10s, 7v7 for u11 and u12s, 8v8 or 9v9 for u13s and 11v11 at u14s. Leave an option open to continue with 8v8 or 9v9v in areas that may not have access to pitches and/or players. This is proven in many parts of Europe, = MORE TOUCHES OF THE BALL.
  6. National guidelines for competition structures for all age groups, making sure everyone is working from the same programme with the same goal.
  7. Put the player first Attitude.
  8. Clubs must have academies, must have proper facilities and qualified coaches. Introduce a licensing and rewarding system. Some suggestions to start with leagues first and reward the academies if they meet the required standards. 
  9. To coach a kids football team their must be at least on adult with the required qualifications specific to his/her age group.
  10. Introduce a club licence with minimum criteria needed to set-up for kids football, i.e Qualified coaches, Facilities, Equipment, Child Welfare officer, Mission statement, Vision, Goals. Again start with leagues first.
  11. Use the best volunteer coaches in ETC (not friends), reward them with free further education. Get RDO’s to work weekends, so they can monitor the game on the ground.
  12. Begin ETC at age 10-21 years. The leagues should start their academies early with the ETP starting after the Kennedy cup, so u14s. After this the league centre should be the regional centre keeping the national philosophy within the leagues. 
  13. Introduce a progressive and phased player pathway.
  14. Begin a player retention programme and a programme for players returning from the abroad.
  15. More emphasis on girls soccer.
  16. Implement Futsal into all leagues, all more team enter into community games and extend the age range, bring back the coaching curriculum.
  17. Introduce a ‘intro to coaching’ specific course for anyone looking to get involved. Looking at what is expected of you and reasons for getting involved. This course would be the door to further education. Anyone doing their K1 or K2 should start coaching in their academies and if they are good enough only then should they be allowed to the Youth Cert. Everyone should pass the course but be given a grade, A= you are able to go on and do the UEFA B provided you are coaching with a team. B= You need more work, nearly there but you will need to be assessed if you want to do your UEFA B. C= Your will need to come back and do a final assessment in two months in order to receive your cert.  Everyone wishing to do the UEFA B should be pre-assessed and again a pass grading system should be applied. 
  18. Parent Behaviour course, mandatory for all clubs for all parents. 1.5 hour workshop.
  19. More access to courses, make them more relevant to the needs of kids today. Look to other European nations and bring in parts of their course into ours. We can’t keep coaching the same content with the same style. Football has many styles of play and so do coaches.
  20. Encourage coaches to develop, introduce incentives to obtain further qualifications. We will need more qualified coaches for a plan to work.
  21. Market the LOI better – More funding for LOI Academies.
  22. Promotion of Futsal in schools programme, promoting the game nationally. How many people are aware of the Emerald League?
  23. Keep kids playing in their communities, no travelling until u13s. If they are good enough then the regional centres will be able to look after. However we would need to be catering for more numbers then the standard. Allow the players move after the Kennedy Cup i.e u14’s and only Elite Players should be allowed move. There is no point in the best regional players going to Dublin to sit on the bench. Year on year regional leagues lose tens of players to Dublin clubs, so go up and never kick a ball in a game. The transfer window closes 15th October and some of these players will be in squads of over 18 players and rarely play. If you’re not playing you’re not learning. That is why we need a transfer window December to January to help some of these players get back into playing. 

Rene Meulensteen

Rene+Meulensteen+Manchester+United+FC+Porto+RUNnKCZAmlplAbove are some of the ideas subscribers to this blog and I have come up with. I could go on for ever. I’m sure some of you have even more to add. The final part of the process is the senior international manager and like Adam, one man I believe we should be looking at is Rene Meulensteen.

Adam McGee (@AdamMcGee11) from ‘More than a game’ explains just way in this excellent piece.

Born in the Netherlands, Meulensteen, 49, has spent the bulk of his coaching career with Manchester United. He arrived at Old Trafford in 2001 as a technical skills development coach with a primary focus on the academy and the younger players on the fringe of the first team. The likes of Danny Welbeck, Nani, Tom Cleverley and the Da Silva twins are some of the players from the current United first team set up that were molded by Meulensteen from an early age. No one witnessed more dramatic growth under the Dutchman’s tutelage than Cristiano Ronaldo though. Meulensteen worked one to one with Ronaldo on his attitude, while helping him to fine tune the natural abilities he had, with improved fundamentals. He isn’t a man with radical coaching philosophies, more a coach with a remarkable understanding of the basics of football, the mechanics. Meulensteen recently revealed the secrets of how he helped Ronaldo to reach that next level while in conversation with the Telegraph’s Henry Winter, and it’s striking how simple his message was.

In 2008, he became First Team Coach at United and one of Ferguson’s right hand men. In his time with the first team, he cemented his reputation as one of the world’s best technical coaches. He worked with the likes of Patrice Evra and Antonio Valencia on their positional awareness, helped Ryan Giggs to reinvent himself, as well as working on pre-match tactics in the build up from game to game. Robin Van Persie credited Meulensteen for his strong form last season.

Talking of Meulensteen’s game plans Van Persie remarked, “I have had a lot of good trainers, but it’s the way he prepares our team for games. Every match is different, so every training session in the build-up to games is unique.” This tactical savvy developed as a result of the young Meulensteen studying some of the greatest teams in history, and particularly the Dutch “Total Football” system of the 1970′s. He worked closely with legendary Dutch coach Wiel Coerver, and strictly adheres to his coaching philosophy. Coerver believed that technical abilities could be coached and that the best teams were born of players who were coached to utilise their existing abilities. By studying some of the best players in the world, Coerver developed a coaching system which could teach skills and techniques to less naturally gifted players. The result is an attacking philosophy built upon working on ball control, first touch and passing, 1v1′s, speed, finishing and attacking as a unit.

This, along with his own man-management style is what Meulensteen could provide Ireland. He could improve the fundamentals of the promising young core the Irish team currently has, while away from Senior games helping to construct a system and philosophy to best develop Irish football into the future. In 2008, the FAI appointed Wim Koeverman as International High Performance director. 4 years on, after Koeverman left to manage the Indian National Team, the relationship would largely be deemed a failure. The reason Meulensteen could succeed where his fellow countryman failed is because of his intricate knowledge of coaching in England, in particular the volatile academy system that the majority of Irish players pass through. Who better to establish a philosophy from the ground up, or develop centres of excellence across the country than the man who was tasked with producing players for Manchester United.

Thanks for the above Adam, you can read the rest of his post here ‘More than a game’ 

Below is video worth looking at, clips from one of Rene’s workshops. I think Rene and Ruud, would be an excellent partnership. They are both Dutch, we had already been working on a 4-3-3 system with the younger international teams, so that would make things a little easier. They could both have an input into the structure of the grassroots game in Ireland and Coerver is already well established in Ireland.

You may be reading this an thinking I’m a dreamer,; I think I’m a realist and I believe in making things happen, I believe in the ability of Irish football players but I also understand that this all costs money, you pay for the best. So maybe another business man who has an interest in Irish Soccer could assist with financial support or maybe JD needs to take another salary cut to come in line with his European neighbours (Spain and Italy).  One thing is for sure change needs to happen and happen fast, we need the best in the business looking at the game from bottom to top.  Nothing is as upsetting to people as change. Yet nothing is as important to the survival of our game as change. History is full of examples of organisations that failed to change and that are now extinct.

How does a Plan work?

For a plan to work it needs to be successfully managed, from the perspective of the volunteers, by definition and understanding their concerns. Resistance to change comes from a fear of the unknown or an expectation of loss and we all need to support each other. And given all the weight of evidence, the public opinion and years of consultation, underpinned by academic research around the world, there is summaries of recommendations that we could support, implement and take forward for the development of youth football in Ireland. The focus is on creating an enjoyable and developmental system for player development across Ireland.

‘Skill is always triggered by attitude’ Rene Meulensteen

Let’s hope change will come soon. Kids football is changing, let’s not get left behind!


All of the above is based on my own research, please correct me If I have got any of the above wrong.


I always like to hear your opinions. Please comment below or email me If, you don’t have anything to add then please forward this on to a friend. Thanks for reading.

I’m also on twitter @Coachdiary

Coerver Development

John Collins keen to bring foreign skill to Scots By Barry Anderson

SITTING at a wind-swept five-a-side complex in Edinburgh, John Collins’ passion for proper youth development is fiercer than any gale outside.

Scotland’s national team is slipping worryingly down the FIFA rankings and recruiting Collins indicates how the SFA aims to address declining standards. One of the country’s most gifted footballers will coach international youth squads from under-15 level upwards and is eager to make a difference.

Collins played in the Champions League semi-finals with Monaco, scored a World Cup goal for Scotland against Brazil and managed Hibs to their only recent trophy success in the 2007 League Cup final. Yet he becomes incandescent when discussing the kids whose footballing progress is stalling all across Scotland. He wants them coached properly on all aspects of the game, hence his appointment to assist the SFA’s new National Youth Teams coach, Scot Gemmill.

As Scotsmen, we already have a great fighting spirit. It’s in the blood, we always give everything,” he continued. “The Scottish player always has that never-say-die attitude, but that’s not enough

“It’s not a full-time role, I’ll be coming in and out,” said Collins, speaking exclusively to the Evening News. “I spoke to Mark Wotte (SFA performance director) a few weeks ago and he asked me if I’d be interested in getting involved and I said I would. Hopefully it will be good for the SFA and good for the kids.

“I’ll enjoy it because I enjoy coaching full-time professionals, whether it’s 30-year-olds, 20-year-olds or young kids. You can make more impact long-term with kids and, as a nation, we’ve got to get working harder with our kids morning, noon and night to develop technical football players.”

That much has been heard many times before. Collins offers something few others can – an insight into football at the very top level; the good habits picked up amongst the Monte Carlo millionaires and the technical ability that takes players to the Champions League’s latter stages. In Scotland, those issues and many others have been ignored for too long. It’s time to learn, and the younger the better.

“We’re not good enough at these things and that’s where we’ve fallen behind in the last 20 years. If we can combine the technical aspects with the natural Scottish spirit, hopefully we’ll get to where we should be – qualifying for tournaments and playing entertaining football”

“As Scotsmen, we already have a great fighting spirit. It’s in the blood, we always give everything,” he continued. “The Scottish player always has that never-say-die attitude, but that’s not enough. We need the technique and a philosophy that, when we go on the pitch, we want to control the opposition and the ball.

“The way to control the opposition is if you have skill, technique and coaching giving the right message that you’re going out to pass, to move and to entertain. Football is entertainment. The bottom line is, if we want to catch the top nations in the world, we’ve got to work on technical development. I don’t want to talk about other coaches the way it’s going. All I’ll say is we need to focus on skill, movement, passing, receiving.

“We’re not good enough at these things and that’s where we’ve fallen behind in the last 20 years. If we can combine the technical aspects with the natural Scottish spirit, hopefully we’ll get to where we should be – qualifying for tournaments and playing entertaining football.

“Young kids at development age are growing in every way. Their muscles are growing, their brains are growing, they’re absorbing information. If you get into good habits as a youngster, they stay with you for life. The younger you can get at them and work on the right aspects of football, the better they will develop.

“We all want to see our communities full of fit and active children. In recent years, that’s fallen. Technology is a big reason for it, as are processed foods. We need more healthy eating and healthy lifestyles. As adults, it’s our responsibility to make things better for younger generations. We all have a responsibility – everybody involved in sport and the government as well. It takes money and hard work and there are initiatives started to get more facilities. I would like kids to do more PE at school. I think that’s the starting block.”

Maradona V belgiumSince his late teens, Collins’ footballing philosophy has been shaped heavily by the globally respected Coerver coaching programme. It celebrates its 21st anniversary in Scotland this year, but is endorsed by worldwide luminaries like Spain’s World Cup-winning coach Vicente Del Bosque and the Argentinian legend Ossie Ardiles. Its focus on individual skills development played a crucial part in Collins’ own development as a player.

“I was 18 and playing at Hibs. Coerver came to Easter Road and did a demonstration on the pitch with their best Dutch kids. I was sponsored by Adidas at the time and they asked me to participate and I thought ‘wow, these kids have incredible balance and skill’. A few months later I went out to a Coerver camp in Lake Placid in America and joined in for a week. I got to know the people who own Coerver, Alfred Galustian and Charlie Cook. Basically, from the first time I saw their coaching, I saw their results with the kids, the balance, co-ordination and two-footed players. I thought, ‘that’s for me’. It’s everything I believe in, everything I believe a footballer should have.”

“Whenever I had a spare minute or got a ball before a warm-up, I was always doing my Coerver work – fast feet, quick touches, change direction, Cruyff turns, stepovers. There’s no doubt it helped me. Although I would have been an even better player if I’d discovered Coerver at seven or eight years of age’


Scotland’s Under-15s, Under-16s and Under-17s can expect to be coached in the same manner now that Collins is involved. “I’ll use Coerver with the Scotland teams, 100 per cent. It’s all part of developing young players because you’ve got to have the tools. If you’re a tradesman, you can’t do your job unless you have a toolbox. Football is the same. You can’t be a football player unless you’ve got the tools. The tools of a football player are: being two-footed, good balance, co-ordination, tempo and a good first touch. That’s all Coerver works on, the important aspects of the game.

“Part of being able to enjoy football is mastering that little white thing. Until you can master it – right foot, left foot, turning, twisting, passing, receiving – you aren’t going to enjoy it. I’ve had my career, but whenever I’ve had an opportunity to promote Coerver, I’ve done it. To this day, I’m still as passionate about it. I love coaching it and I love seeing kids doing it. I can watch a game of football in Edinburgh and spot a kid who’s been doing Coerver sessions for years because he has the balance and co-ordination.

“It’s not the be-all-and-end-all because to be a top player you need other attributes as well. You need to be brave and have good endurance and fitness. But Coerver gives much more than just skill. You’re working your calves with sharp movement, and if the session is done intensively then you’re working your cardio as well. It’s something, as you can tell, that I really love.”

The wind begins to pick up outside, yet it is no distraction when Collins is in full flow. He gives the impression he would happily sit all day and chat about improving Scottish kids and how best to coach them. For him, a key word is “ambition”. Players should never settle for the ability they have and should always strive to improve as individuals. Collins explains how Coerver’s philosophy helped him become a better footballer.

“Too often, at 18 or 19, we already think we’re the finished article,” he lamented. “Players say, ‘I’m a professional now, I’m full-time, I’ve got my contract, that’s it. I just need to train every day like everybody else is and I’ll be okay. I’ve always been of the mindset that you can always get better, right up until the day you retire. If you’re on that training pitch doing the right things, then technically you should be improving every single month. Age doesn’t affect skill, it affects physical strength and speed.

“Whenever I had a spare minute or got a ball before a warm-up, I was always doing my Coerver work – fast feet, quick touches, change direction, Cruyff turns, stepovers. There’s no doubt it helped me. Although I would have been an even better player if I’d discovered Coerver at seven or eight years of age.

“The country which has taken on Coerver the most in the last 20 years is Japan. Coerver is all over Japan. Alfred Galustian (Coerver co-founder) works in Japan for four months every year coaching their coaches. The secret to covering lots of kids is concentrate on their coaches. I think their professional leagues have something like 300 kids who have been through the Coerver system since they were tots.

“Anybody who doesn’t know Coerver properly will say it’s all about tricks, it’s a circus. People who mention the word ‘tricks’ doesn’t know what they’re talking about. Coerver isn’t about tricks. It’s about moves, knocking the opponent off balance. Stepover one way, change balance and bang, you’re away the other way. It is moves to create space on the pitch to let you deliver a pass, a cross or go through one on one to score a goal. Thirty yards from goal you need to be able to create space to cut open a packed defence. Most goals are created by a bit of magic and I think Coerver teaches kids the magic.”

The youngsters currently in the Scotland youth squads will now be introduced to that magic as John Collins seeks to do his bit to arrest the country’s footballing decay.

Focus on skill

COERVER coaching is a global football coaching programme inspired by the late Dutch manager Wiel Coerver.

It teaches football skills for all ages, but specifically for young players aged between five and 16 years old.

The programme focuses on individual skills development and small group play and ultimately aims to improve the technique of its participants.

Coerver is designed to develop skilled, confident and creative players; make the game fun to practice and play; teach good sportsmanship and respect for all; value winning but not more than character and performance as well as provide a safe and educational experience that meets top practice criteria.

The Coerver company was established in the late 1970s and is owned by Alfred Galustian and the former Chelsea player Charlie Cooke.

It is endorsed by football clubs and international federations across the world and celebrates its 21st anniversary in Scotland in late August this year. The French Football Federation, Football Federation of Australia, the Chinese Football Association, the Japanese Football Association, Bayern Munich, Newcastle United and Arsenal all back the programme.

The first kid to come through the Coerver coaching programme and reach the World Cup finals was the Dutch international winger Bolo Zenden in 1998.

Published on 24/04/2013 12:00

Edinburgh Evening News

Dublin Workshop 

Coerver are running a workshop in Dublin on 18 and 19th May you can find out more here Coerver Workshop Dublin

Irish Grassroots Football

Shelbourne FC taking big strides announcing a new 5 year deal

BREAKING NEWS: I just received news from Paul Fogarty Technical Director at Shelbourne and Austin Speight Head of Coerver Coaching in Ireland that Shelbourne FC have signed a 5 year deal with Coerver Coaching.

Press Release:

Both Shelbourne FC & Coerver Coaching are pleased to announce our partnership starting immediately and in place until May 2018.


This puts Shelbourne in a unique position of bringing in proven internationally recognised coaching professionals to assist in developing the club alongside Shelbourne staff.

Coerver Coaching are the Worlds No 1 technical coaching program & is widely used by many top professional clubs and national associations’ .across the World. The program will focus on developing skilled, creative and talented players who are technically competent with an array of skills to beat opponents in 1v1 situation.

The staff and players at the club will be accessing a similar type of Coerver Partner club program currently in place at English Premier League Stoke City and many clubs throughout Europe.

The aim of the partnership is to:

  • Train the coaches at the club
  • Follow a CPD program for Shelbourne coaching staff
  • Follow a professional coaching curriculum
  • Develop better technically skilled players for Shelbourne
  • Attract the best players & coaches to the club
  • Coerver Coaching academy to open for the  clubs players
  • Tolka Park to be a venue for Coerver Coaching high profile coaching events
  • Shelbourne coaching staff offer professional club trips abroad
  • Shelbourne Players offer professional club trips abroad
  • Talented Shelbourne players will be given opportunities to trial with teams in the U.K and across Europe.

This is a unique and exciting development for Irish football and Shelbourne FC as they look to become the leading schoolboy club in Dublin.

Shelbourne FC, one of the most illustrious football clubs in Ireland are delighted to be able to enter into such a partnership with Coerver Coaching. With Shelbourne FC already having the largest and most successful schoolboy section out of all league of Ireland sides, believe this partnership will not only keep them at the forefront of League of Ireland but also help them become the largest most progressive and developmental schoolboy clubs throughout the country.

“Coerver Coaching course at Real Madrid was very well received by us all, since our goal, especially in the formative years, is technical excellence. Unless players are highly technical, it does not matter what system or tactic you play, at the highest level, you will probably lose.”

Vincente Del Bosque, Spanish National team manager and European Championship and World Cup winning coach.

With a clear player pathway from the youngest ages in schoolboy football to the highest level of football played in Ireland Shelbourne FC are positive that with the help of Coerver Coaching they will be able to produce technically gifted players on a regular basis for not only their First Team but also for the International Squads at all ages.

Paul Fogarty, Technical Director of the Schoolboy Section said “This is something myself and Coerver have worked very hard on bringing into the club, I have looked into many coaching systems and Coerver Coaching has always come out on top as the most progressive, technical skills orientated system I have found. I truly feel that not only will we produce the typical never say die Irish player, we will produce a player with that attitude and now the technical skills to match anybody throughout world football which will not only benefit us as a club but future Irish International Squads”  

We at Arsenal are strong believers in Coerver Coaching  program. We want all our young players to be exposed to it, so we invited Alf Galustian to be our academy technical coaches instructor

Liam Brady, Ireland Legend & Academy Manager at   Arsenal FC

Austin Speight Ireland Director for Coerver Coaching and former coach at West Ham, Stockport County, Manchester City & Blackburn Rovers, will personally oversee the program and deliver the coach education sessions for Shelbourne. Austin has vast experience of working with elite players who have gone from talented schoolboys to top Premier league players in the past 20 years.

Austin said “ Coerver Coaching are very pleased to link up with Shelbourne who have a great past history and reputation in Irish Professional football, we now look to develop the next level and develop more players for the club over the coming years. I have been very impressed by the staff at the club and their enthusiasm to bring Coerver Coaching into the club, develop their players and staff & to get this program moving”.

All young players will improve by following coerver coaching progamme. I have seen many different methods of coaching skills and coerver coaching beats them all

Peter Beardsley, England Legend and football Development Manager at Newcastle United FC

For further quotes on Coerver Coaching success and reputation:

Contact Austin Speight, Coerver Coaching and/or Paul Fogarty, Shelbourne FC to find out more.

This is certainly a big step in the right direction, Coerver coaching will have huge benefits on the technical development of both the boys and girls sections at Shelbourne FC. Girls soccer is on the rise in Ireland and Shelbourne who are already one of the biggest facilitator to the sport, will certainly have the advantage over other clubs with this new deal.

Coaching Clinics Irish Grassroots Football

Coerver Coaching Workshops

Coerver Coaching Ireland are starting 2 day workshop for coaches of all levels.

The NDSL Academy will host the first one in May on Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th.

Along with Austin Speight from Coerver coaching, Gareth Hayden will be looking after the SAQ session and Tom Bates doing the Sports Psychology and Elite Performance part. Personally I think this is great value at €75.00.


NDSL COERVER COACHING – Weekend May 18/19 2013

  • 2 Day Event
  • NDSL Coolock – 10-4 PM Each Day.
  • Coerver Coaching sessions – Austin Speight
  • SAQ / Strength and Conditioning sessions – Gareth Hayden
  • Sports Psychology – Tom Bates- WBA
  • Elite performance coach- Tom Bates – WBA
  • Cost for 2 days just €75.00 

Note: Places are limited so early booking is advised. All coaches attending must be pre booked, no walk ons on the day.

For more information call: Coerver Office – 042 936 6910 – NDSL –   087 951 3624

Other dates for the Diary are:

Coerver Diploma

Cork and Waterford dates TBC

Limerick April 20/21

Belfast May 25/26

Dublin Aug 17/18

  • Includes all course literature
  • 5 set Coerver dvd
  • Diploma Certificate
  • Cost €229.00

To book for the Diploma call Coerver office 042 936 6910 or email-

Coaching Clinics

Coerver @ the NDSL Academy, earlier tonight…

Considering the winter conditions, there was great turn out for the Coaches Club at the NDSL Academy tonight. From start to finish this was an extremely well organised session; fun, fast and thoroughly enjoyable.

Austin and Ross from Coerver Coaching, put on one of the best Technical skills sessions I have ever witnessed. The 16 NSDL Academy players were put through a fast and exciting session working on speed, agility, coordination, stamina and strength. The drills required the players to use both feet at all times, change of direction, step overs and feints in 1v1, 2v2, 3v3, 4v4 and 8v8 practices.

5 changes of direction: 1.Inside cut, 2. outside cut, 3. U Turn, 4. Hook, 5. Turn Step on

What I liked so much about tonight was that every player was on the ball from start to finish and they even experimented with size 1 balls up to size 5. They also worked on decision making for both defender and attackers, combined with running with the ball and finishing under pressure.

The players had to be sharp, working on Speed, Game intelligence and finishing. The session was completed with a shadow practice session on a full pitch, playing in a 4-3-3 formation. Playing out from the back, into midfield and up to the front man with variations using the wide men and over-lapping fullbacks. At all times the players were encouraged to be sharp, quick on the ball, moving it at speed and keeping the shape of the team intact.

This was my second ever live Coerver session and already I can’t wait for the the next one.

Next Month

Coerver are back in Dublin for the Diploma Course, which I will de-fin-itely be attending.

Each Attending Coach Will Receive:

  • 2-days of expert tuition from Coerver® Coaching co-founder Charlie Cooke & Coerver Ireland Director Austin Speight.
  • Full course resource material & New Coerver® Coaching 5-disc   “Session Planner“ DVD (Worth € 69.99)
  • Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma Certificate of Attendance

Dates: August 25th, 26th 2012

Venue: NDSL, Oscar Traynor Centre, Coolock,Dublin.

Times: 9.30 registration, 10am start, 16.00 finish. 

Price: €229

To book call 086 796. 9974 or email

PS. A huge shout out to Mitch Whitty on the continued success of the coaches club. Well Done Mitch!

Coaching Clinics

Make Your Move – August 25th, 26th Dublin 2012

Coerver is back and I have just signed up to do the course. After 2 unsuccessful attempts to do it, nothing is gonna get in my way this time around. Just in case you have been living in a hole, this is what its all about….

The Youth Diploma and Coaches Overview

The purpose of the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma is to give attendees, whether you are a professional academy coach, junior coach, teacher or parent a greater understanding of how to plan & deliver more effective coaching sessions.

This will be made possible by learning to use the New Coerver® Coaching Session Planner which will provide a quick & easy solution for all attendees who would like to construct weekly, monthly or even season long programmes using proven, high quality drills & games from Coerver® Coaching, “The Worlds’ Number 1 Soccer Skills Teaching Method”. 

  • Drills and games developed over our 27 year history, that you can use to build sessions for many seasons using the NEW Coerver® Coaching Session Planner.
  • The secrets Coerver® Coaching have used over the last 27 years to establish themselves as “The World’s Number One Soccer Skills Teaching Method”.
  • Essential tips on how to improve your coaching & make your sessions more effective.

The Coerver ® Coaching Youth Diploma is a 2-day course that has been broken down into 4 modules that will be presented through lecture presentations & practical demonstrations:

Module 1 – The Coerver® Approach To Coaching

Module 2 – The Coerver® Curriculum

Module 3 –  Coerver® Session Planning for your Season

Module 4 – Coerver® Tips To Be A Better Coach

Course Intructors

The Youth Diploma launch will see Coerver® Coaching Co-Founder Charlie Cooke providing expert tuition to all attendees.

Charlie played for Aberdeen and Dundee in the Scottish First Division before joining Chelsea in the English First Division in 1966 where he played for the next 11 years.

He made 380 league and Cup appearances for the Blues and played in four Cup Finals, winning the English F.A. Cup in 1970 against Leeds and the European Cup Winners Cup in 1971 against Real Madrid. He also played 16 times for the Scottish National Team and a World Select Team in 1979. He shares the Chelsea club record of three Player of The Year awards with Gianfranco Zola and in 2005 Chelsea’s Centenary celebration year he was selected for the Chelsea All Time XI. Pic: Charlie Cooke

Austin Speight

Austin holds the highest coaching award the Uefa Pro Licence with English FA. His coaching career at professional level  in UK  has included:

  • West Ham United (92-95),
  • Stockport County (95-98),
  • Manchester City (98-99),
  • Blackburn Rovers (99-07).

He has worked with many top class players including David Beckham, Joe Cole, Frank Lampard, Steven Gerard & Phil Jones to name a few.

He joined Coerver  Coaching in 2007 and is director of UK/Ireland. He is also currently a coaching consultant  for Uefa.

‘Pyramid’ Click to Enlarge

What you get – Course Package

Each Attending Coach Will Receive:

  • 2-days of expert tuition from Coerver® Coaching co-founder Charlie Cooke & Coerver Ireland Director Austin Speight.
  • Full course resource material & New Coerver® Coaching 5-disc   “Session Planner“ DVD (Worth € 69.99)
  • Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma Certificate of Attendance

Where and When

Dates: August 25th, 26th 2012

Venue: NDSL, Oscar Traynor Centre, Coolock,Dublin.

Times: 9.30 registration, 10am start, 16.00 finish. 

Price: €229

To book call 086 796. 9974 or email