Sunday, February 23, 2014

A must read for any parent of a goalkeeper in USA!

I am just writing this article in a hope to educate mums an dads in the USA. Normally I would keep quiet about things like this but when it involves preventing children progressing and developing, I feel I need to speak out!

I have been running J4K goalkeeper training schools now for 15 years in 21 countries and across 5 continents and whichever country Just4keepers goes into the local soccer clubs goalkeeper coaches welcome us with open arms as they know we can help assist their club. This is because they are educated and have belief in themselves and understand the importance of their players getting coached by as many experienced coaches as possible.

As no other gk coaching schools comes close to the Just4keepers experience, history and proven success track record, soccer clubs normally very keen for J4K to help their goalkeeper coach and goalkeepers.

So when I started Just4keepers gk schools USA in 2013 and I saw soccer growing at the rapid rate that it is, I expected the same response from soccer clubs.

So I was shocked to see some of the hostility towards J4K from many club goalkeeper coaches.  Now normally I take no notice of this because what normally happens when parents and keepers find out about J4K, they come to us anyway when they see what we offer.

But was has happened over the past few months, I am in total disbelief at the way some soccer club goalkeeper coaches have poorly conducted themselves.

Believe it or not, we have had club keeper coaches threatening to cut their club goalkeepers from their team if they participate in the J4K training. Some of these keepers have just been 8 year old. Imagine a grown man threatening a child in this way!

I have been involved in soccer at every level for over 30 years now and I have never heard of a coach threatening a child like this! This is so so low!

However me, being me, I wanted to know why some goalkeeper coaches did not want their soccer club keepers to attend our training because if it was something lacking with J4K I wanted to put this right within my organisation.

But after looking into J4K I knew we were not doing anything wrong but when researching these goalie coaches, I quickly realised it had nothing to do with j4K, it was either that the club goalkeeper coach huge ego or the coach not wanting to be found out as lacking in their abilities.

What I mean by this is… more or less every club keeper coach that I checked out, had NO proven experience or success as a goalkeeper. So they were basically frightened that if their club goalkeepers came to J4K and seen the gk coaching that we do, they would be found out!

So basically these club goalie coaches are protecting themselves… which is embarrassing!

Unbelievably these club goalkeeper coaches are actually preventing their club keepers going to an environment where they will get developed and will get educated so no questions get asked about their lack of abilities as a coach.

In EVERY country I run Just4keepers, soccer clubs and goalkeeper coaches encourage children to go to other soccer coaches because the more exposure children get to different soccer coaches, they will learn a lot quicker, which is common sense!

So this is has been a huge eye opener to me as I have so much respect for everything the USA does, but honestly I did not expect to see coaches act in such an unprofessional manner to protect their short comings.

So if you are parent what should you do?

First of all… NEVER let anyone tell you where you can or cannot take your child!

Lets put it this way, if your child was in 6th grade and loved music and you took them for a extra weekly private tuition  to help them improve, what would you say if  your childs school music teacher said to you… ‘Heh I have heard your child is having private tuition, well if you do not stop this right now, I am going to get him kicked out of school!’

If your childs schoolteacher stated this, you would quite rightly flip and put in a serious complaint with the school head because this teacher is basically preventing your child develop!

Well what these keeper coaches are doing is EXACTLY the same!

And for some reason mums and dads in the USA allow these soccer coaches to do this to their children!

AS A PARENT you need to grow a backbone …- If your soccer coach tells your child they cannot be developed somewhere different to your soccer club, you  need to research this coach…. And if they have not got a proven track record of helping their club students to become a success… DO NOT listen to this soccer coach!

On a personal note, after doing all my homework on the coaches that threatened the j4k students from being cut from their soccer team 100% NO track record developing children, NO prior record making their students a success… so how dare they prevent their club keepers go elsewhere.

I am confident if you did your research on any soccer coach that tells you, you cannot take your child elsewhere is doing this to cover their short fallings, so beware.

I am telling you this as a parent myself not as a soccer coach with a proven track record for success….. Unless your club soccer coach can guarantee your child’s development and success (and trust me 95% cannot) if they tell you that you cannot take your child elsewhere for extra soccer coaching… tell them to get stuffed!

If they state they will get your child cut from the soccer team, go one better and say… I tell you what, we quit and we are going to find a soccer club with a coach who is not threatening my child!

In every country that I run J4K, if a goalkeeper coach threatened a child with getting cut from the team just because they went elsewhere to be developed, there would be uproar and this gk coach would get a serious backlash!

But for some reason parents in the US let soccer coaches who do not know what they are talking about for the most part, dictate to them what their child can or cannot do. This is crazy crazy crazy!

As I said above mums and dads should NEVER allow this and should start standing up for their children in a situation when a club soccer coach is holding their child back!

One last point for anyone who thinks I am saying this our of sour grapes. All I can say to this, is we coach over 5000 plus goalkeepers every week in 21 countries and in just 13 months of opening in the US we have a presence in 10 states!

So I do not state this out of sour grapes!

No, I state the above because I have a burning passion to help children and it really really annoys me when a grown man is willing to sacrifice a childs development to protect their short comings.

Mums and Dads please take note and pass this to as many other parents as you can… as this needs to be stopped and stopped FAST as I know it is not just J4k that is seeing this.

Remember its parents that hold their chilrens future in their hands…  NOT soccer coaches!

Sunday, February 02, 2014

Just4keepers Founder Ray Newland with Joe hart

I have just found this photograph is in my draw… its a picture of a young England keeper Joe Hart (can you spot him)

I'm pictured far right failing trying to look casual in my hoody!

England Goalkeeper Joe hart

Also in this picture is other professional keepers, Nicky Weaver, Kasper Schmeichel (son of Man U goalkeeper Peter  Schmeichel) and the then Swedish International Andreas Isaksson.
The coach in the white t short was the then Manchester City goalkeeping coach and ex England International goalkeeper Tim Flowers.

This is a few years old now, and was when I was invited to watch the Manchester City goalkeepers train at their new training centre. You will also see in this pic Just4Keepers goalkeeping coaches Carlo and Ricardo Grecco who had flown in from Canada to see me to be trained up with their new J4K business. So it was a nice surprise for them both to also see how premiership keepers get trained.

They noted what they saw with the gk training session was a major difference between the goalkeeper training in North America, was the high intensity training, and also the attention to detail when it comes to developing a goalkeepers technique.