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FAI hosts goalkeeper pilot course

The second of four UEFA Study Group Scheme pilot seminars for goalkeeper coach educators was held in Dublin with a mix of presentations and practical demonstrations.

The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) has hosted the second in a series of pilot seminars aimed at goalkeeper coach educators which forms part of the successful UEFA Study Group Scheme for this season.

A new addition to the Study Group Scheme programme – an innovative technical exchange project enabling UEFA's member national associations to discuss and share knowledge – the four pilot goalkeeping courses supplement a total of 54 seminars planned for the current season on topics including coach education, the grassroots, elite youth football and the women's game.

Following on from the first goalkeeper course held in Belgium in September, the FAI staged the second seminar over four days at the Tallaght Stadium in Dublin in October, with 46 delegates from 18 countries in attendance.

"The Football Association of Ireland was honoured to have the opportunity to stage one of the UEFA Study Group Scheme seminars for the specialist position of goalkeeper," said FAI national coordinator for coach education Greig Paterson. "The seminar itself concentrated on the way those working with professional or elite goalkeepers should shape their training sessions and the competences required by both the coach and the goalkeeper himself.

"Following our exchange of information, I noted that opinions were very positive and favourable towards our hosting of this seminar and the way we have been working hard to devise a course curriculum for a goalkeeping coaching licence that might become standardised across Europe."

"The seminar comprised 13 theoretical presentations and five practical demonstration sessions," added FAI high performance director Wim Koevermans. "The chief objective was to propose new methods of education, with our reality-based learning approach at the heart of this. We also wanted to propose that the goalkeeper coach takes on more responsibility and works with the goalkeeper in tandem with other units of the team, rather than working with the goalkeeper in isolation."

Two more goalkeeping courses in the pilot series are set to be hosted by Sweden and the Netherlands, with all of UEFA's 53 member associations scheduled to take part in at least one of the four events.