Soccer, also known as football, is undoubtedly the most popular sport in the entire world. The origin of soccer can be traced to nearly every corner of the planet. The Japanese, Chinese, Greeks, Persians, Italians, Vikings and many other cultures played some form of soccer long ago. The Chinese are said to have been playing “football” games as far back as 3000 years ago. Modern football however, begun in England in the 1860s where the first football association, the English Football Association, was formed after the split of association football and rugby football. Football rules were being formulated in 1963 by representatives from London Clubs and schools. The first international match was between England and Scotland way back in 1872.
Fast forward to today where soccer has millions, if not billions of fans, and hundreds of football clubs and associations in most of the countries. Today’s governing soccer body is FIFA, Federation Internationale de Football Association and Joseph S. Blatter is the president. The headquarters are in Zurich. FIFA has control over any football association in any country so long as they are members. This is because a club or country has to be a member of FIFA to be internationally recognized.
Soccer coaches are among the most respected people in the world today as they manage some of the big teams that have huge financial backing and many followers making football big business both now and in the future. So what are the requirements to becoming a professional football coach? In the United States the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) offers coaching courses in 2 levels. The first one is the State Diploma that involves training coaches for younger kids aged between 6 and 12 years and the Regional Diploma which is a 13 hour course for coaches who will be training youth from the ages of 12 to 19 years. Coaches are tasked with ensuring that they provide a safe and educational playing environment for their players. Each and every coach must have all the players’ best interest at heart. Coaches have to not only train soccer players skills on playing the game but also skills on being an independent thinker as the game involves radical changes and unpredictability hence decisions have to be made fast so as to have an advantage over the other opponents.
According to United States Youth Soccer Association (USYSA), in order to get a general certificate in soccer coaching for an 11-a side team, a trainee would have to put in 15-20 hours of training and $50 - $100 for the certificate course. After which one has the discretion to advance to certificate D through to certificate A which is highest as per USYSA (NSCAA 6). Working conditions for coaches are good as many of them work during normal business hours. Some coaches have different time schedule for when the whole team can make it for practice like maybe in the evenings from 5 pm to 6 pm and weekends. It all depends with the kind of team one is coaching. Coaching a professional team will usually take more hours than others. This calls for much dedication and commitment from the coach and the players alike.
The pay range for professional coaches also varies from one institution to another. Most of the salaries for beginners range from $30,000 to $45,000 (Goldblatt 72). Health benefits are also given to the coaches. There are numerous opportunities for advancement what really counts is qualifications and experience plus a person’s track record which speaks volumes about an individual. Vacations come as per the agreement with the employer to take leaves especially off season and during holidays. Coaching is a wonderful experience to meet new people and inspire them and get inspired as well. Coaching creates an avenue to influence and shape people’s lives positively.
Goldblatt, David. The Ball is Round: A Global History of Soccer. New York: Riverhead Books,
NSCAA. National Soccer Coaches Association of America. NSCAA, (n.p.). Web. 23 Sep. 2011