FIFA Grassroots course gets underway
PAGO PAGO, AS — There have been numerous youth, junior and women’s coaching courses as well as referee courses but for the first time, Football Federation American Samoa now has a FIFA Grassroots course as part of its development curriculum.
The course, officially opened by FFAS President Iuli Alex Godinet on Wednesday, July 18, 2012 at Pago Park Soccer Stadium’s National Headquarters in Pago Pago, is being conducted by FIFA Instructor Nicola Demaine (also OFC Women’s Development Officer) and Daniel Shirley, the OFC Player Development Officer.
Also helping out the two off island instructors during the course is FFAS Technical Director Ruben Luvu.
“Grassroots is the bloodline of all sports,” Demaine told the 26 participants during her opening speech. “If you look at all the top athletes they all came from grassroots levels that you will be teaching.”
The grassroots level includes all children from ages 6-12.
“Children are not small adults and they should not be taught as small adults,” said Shirley during his presentation.
Some of the goals of the course are to raise awareness around grassroots soccer and to equip the coaches with the proper knowledge in organizing age appropriate activities for children ages 6-8 and 9-12.
The course will cover many aspects having to deal with children of these ages in both theoretical and practical sessions. It will culminate with a soccer festival on Saturday, July 21 at Pago Park Soccer Stadium.
All the coaches will put to practice what they learned throughout the four-day course by organizing the festival with children of the targeted age group.“This knowledge that the coaches are learning will help make the future soccer players of American Samoa much better,” Iuli explained. “This is just another course by FIFA and OFC that will benefit FFAS hugely.”
Some of the participants are from clubs affiliated with FFAS while others are schoolteachers and some include FFAS staff members.