Coach Education based on Playing Philosophy is a Major Step to Greatness

The main man...Covenor, Augusto Palacios. Picture by Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

The main man…SAFCA’s Interim  Covinor, Augusto Palacios.
Picture by Ryan Wilkisky/BackpagePix

THE South African Football Coaches Association (SAFCA) is pressing ahead with its programme of action to transform the technical set up of the South African football. SAFCA’s Interim Convenor Professor Augusto Palacios, says the organisation will continue to engage SAFA on technical related matters in a bid to find solutions to coaching challenges and problems that are causing harm to our football development.

Speaking at the SAFCA Media briefing in Johannesburg where he was flanked by his fellow colleagues in Professor Ted Dumitru, Coach Sudesh Singh and Coach Sam Mbatha; Palacios said the unity and cooperation of coaches from amateur to professionals will help the process of correcting the wrongs in our coaching education and the implementation of such syllabus.

SAFCA is equally concern about the influx of foreign coaching programmes in the country as well as the unprecedented movements of coaches in the PSL. SAFCA is of the view that Coaching Instability in South Africa has more devastating consequences than we realise and the major negative effects are as follows:

  • Destabilising effect on players’ training and performance as the key principle of continuity is denied. Approximately 3000 hours of continuous training are required to implement a competitive playing philosophy in any club’s coaching approach.
  • It becomes impossible to implement any relevant playing philosophy
  • High performance objectives become unachievable
  • Coaching instability leads to players’ instability because any new or short term coaches targets a different type of players and it is highly detrimental to young players.
  • Constant damage is done to all national teams due to inconsistent selection, confusing styles and instable performances

The Coaching situation as depicted above can be addressed provided there is a political will and the financial will. SAFCA believes that the following interventions can remedy the ailing coaching situation in the country.

  • Convene a national technical conference to fix the wrongs
  • Immediate implementation and execution of the National Playing Philosophy (NPP)
  • Provide Refresher courses and workshops for professional coaches as a matter of urgency, the seminars will be based on advanced inputs from SAFCA’S research and innovations
  • Regularise the Club Licensing operations
  • Enforce the code of conduct through SAFCA
  • Engage the media to promote a unitary approach to the coaching development based on the NPP

SAFCA is also engaging SAFA regarding the unauthorised commercialised foreign coaching programs that creates general confusion and discontent in the country:

  • In the meeting with SAFA it was acknowledged that only SAFA as the technical authority can approve coaching courses and youth development programs that are offered outside the SAFA structures
  • All those foreign based initiatives must provide SAFA with the content of their syllabus for approval.
  • The content of training and coaching offered through foreign initiatives has to be defined and guided by the South African NPP.
  • There are multitude of biological, cultural and environmental factors that impose a different approach to youth development in South Africa as compared for example to European concepts; (different maturation rate, different natural attributes and limitations (mental, physical and football specifics, different mentality regarding performance in football, climate/altitude factors, etc.)

The SAFCA Technical Study Group is due to release a first set of crucial findings on the early Loco-Motor maturation of South African children and its impact on the development of outstanding talent. This discovery will completely invalidate any conventional youth concept or methodology that is currently used or imported in South Africa

There is a wide spread perception that the high increase of foreign football interest in SA youth coaching is actually a disguised from of international hunt campaign exacerbated by the critical shortage of exceptional young players at the top of international football. The exorbitant fees that are charged are also a major concern for SAFCA.

Based on the above, SAFCA strongly propose a full investigation of all foreign youth coaching projects that are currently and indiscriminately operating in South Africa.

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