Colin’s Corner – February 2019

Schools have started!

Hello all,

I hope that you have all had a great break and that you are just as excited as I am to get back into football again. It is great to be out on the pitch with weather like this and it’s great to see that more and more kids have joined the club over the summer!

We have also started with our morning training sessions again. We believe that in order to lift the level of football in New Zealand we need to work hard on developing individuals. The ambition we have is to play on the highest level possible with youth players from our Academy that feed into our first team. We are not that far yet, but in one or two years the first players will be knocking on the door of the first team.

Working hard is one thing, the other is quality of training and quantity. In order to make a difference, we need to provide a platform for players to potentially reach professional football; this involves players needing to train 5 times a week, with great coaching in a good environment from the age of 13 and older. For this reason we want to facilitate morning training sessions to all players in Christchurch.

These morning training sessions should be an add on to the group sessions players have 3 times a week. The morning training sessions focus on individual development. Players and coaches sit together and discuss what individual goals need to be reached. Then we make a plan and work towards these goals. On top of that we believe players need more knowledge of the game, so therefore we offer them a referee course. In term 2 we will be adding lifestyle skills, nutritional support and some basic knowledge on strength training. Combined with the individual training sessions we believe this is a great environment for our youth players to work towards their dreams.

Ultimately we will be very proud if one of these youngsters will reach professional football, but I am certain that the ones that don’t make it have a great set of skills and knowledge to be very sportive human beings that can operate in a team environment.

So far we have got 21 players training in the morning! That is more than a third of all Academy players U13 and up. We would like to get all of them in, and therefore we are still discussing this program with several schools. At this stage Discovery Unlimited and St Thomas have agreed to build their curriculum around our football programme which is great! Some individuals that go to different schools have gone to their teachers and asked for dispensation to also attend the morning training sessions and with success.

On a Tuesday and Thursday we transport these 21 players from and to school! I wish I had this opportunity when I was younger! Hope to have given you some insight of what we are working towards. Thank you for reading and see you all at the club!