Soccer festival all about coaching the coaches

Mitchell’s Plain Local Football Association (MPLFA), in association with Safa Cape Town and Safa national, hosted a soccer festival with a twist at Portland High School on Sunday. Instead of simply kicking ball, coaches from various clubs in Mitchell’s Plain and elsewhere took centre stage as they were put through a series of drills to evaluate their level of competence.

Strandfontein AFC’s Jamaine Bosman guides young players at one of the drill stations during Sunday’s soccer festivities at Portland High. Picture: Fuad Esack

Sunday’s festivities follows a three-week Confederation of African Football (CAF) D licensing accredited course that was held at the same venue.

“This an entry level qualification that allows coaches to coach at grassroots level,” said MPLFA head of coaching Yaasien Solomons.

He said among the topics covered was how to to deal with young players from different backgrounds.

MPLFA HOD for coaching, Yaasien Solomons and Neil Davids doing the rounds at Sunday’s soccer coaching festival at Portland High School. Picture: Fuad Esack

“As a coach you need to know more than football basics, because it’s not just about football. The skills you learn can be applied on and off the pitch.

“The CAF D Football festival was to showcase what the coaches learnt during the three-week course and they were assessed to determine if they are competent or not competent as coaches,” he said.

Kenpark FC’s Jody du Plessis share a few words of advice with some of the youngsters who attended Sunday’s soccer coaching festival at Portland High. Picture: Fuad Esack

Solomons said he was happy to report that 38 coaches were found competent.

“So the whole festival was planned out by the coaches themselves whereby they set up six stations for the 60 to 70 kids participating,” he said.

Caleb Botha, wearing the orange bib, goes through his paces at one of the drill stations during Sunday’s soccer festival. Picture: Fuad Esack

“Each station either had either a technical drill or a small sided game (SSG) which the players would participate in. Throughout the process the instructors, Marion February and Donovan Smith walked around to asses all the coaches.

Coaches Waleed Jacobs, Matthew Roman, Jamaine Bosman and Gideon Green round up a session with the youngsters at Sunday’s Soccer festival at Portland High. Picture: Fuad Esack

Rushdie Kenny, from Hanover Park, a member of Eagles Performance Academy (EPA), was among the coaches who attended Sunday’s soccer festival.

From left are, Marco Daniels, Rushdie Kenny, Joshua Adams and Kamo Maleka, following Sunday’s football festivities at Portland High. Picture: Fuad Esack

“We had to put on a football festival for young children as a requirement for the CAF D Licence course. It was a successful day, seeing the children delighted and helping them complete the mini drills was fantastic,” he said.

“I work with new coaches in addition to learning more about football coaching and managing larger teams.This course aided me in pursuing my lifelong goal of becoming a certified coach,” he said.