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Coaching with Onside Ministries

If you haven't done any sports coaching before please don't let that discourage you from joining us.  Onside Ministries provides a structure for coaching players of different ages which will be suitable for coaches with varying degrees of experience/ability. 

Prior to leaving the UK Onside Ministries organises a coaching day for all tour participants, giving you the chance to meet your fellow travellers and receive some top quality training.  When you reach your tour destination you will then work with Onside coaches on a daily basis, who will assist you put together your sessions for each day and support you throughout the course of the tour.

We will never throw you in at the deep end and expect you to run sessions on your own.  You will always be working with experienced coaches who will guide you throw the coaching process.



 Structure of Coaching Sessions


Our coaching sessions are structured in such a way as to be easy for our coaches to set up and follow while still being fun for the children who come along.  We normally start off each session with a simple warm up to get everyone focussed and ready for the activities ahead.  We then move on to do three or four drills, all of which are concentrated on one particular skill set, e.g. passing, dribbling, etc.  When we have finished the drills we have a short 10-15 minute break to allow everyone to get a drink and during this rest period we have a mentorship talk from one of the coaches.  After this we then move on to some small sided games, which can vary from 4 v 4 through to 8 v 8.


The structure of our coaching sessions has been put together by two professional youth coaches, Mirko Mazzantini (current U-16 coach at ACF Fiorentina in Italy) and Simone Bombardieri (current U-14 coach at Empoli F.C. in Italy), and moves the children from very simple drills right through to more complicated tactical exercises. Mirko and Simone formed the 'Soccer Italian Style' Academy in 2005 and are authors of numerous books and coaching manuals aimed at youth football.  Although the coaching employed is of a very high standard it is also accessable and can be easily used both by experienced and inexperienced coaches alike.



Philosophy of Coaching


Coaching football in a certain way is very important to us as an organisation.  We believe in possession football, keeping control of the ball and always being attack minded.  The quote (above right) from former Northern Ireland captain Danny Blanchflower encapsulates the way we want our young people to learn to play the game - with style and flair. 


One of our main focuses is mastery of the football - being able to receive the ball and bring it under control as quickly as possible before using possession in a positive way. Our drills are designed to promote ball control and enhance the technical skills of the players.  Apart from ball mastery we also work a lot on small sided games, which recreate actual game situations but allow players more involvement than regular 11 v 11 games.


Although a lot of our drills are focussed on attacking football and transitional play we also value solid defending and with our partnership with Soccer Italian Style means that our kids learn from the best - what Italian coaches don't know about defending isn't worth knowing!

“Football is about glory, it is about doing things in style and with a flourish, about going out and beating the other lot, not waiting for them to die of boredom”   Danny Blanchflower, Tottenham Hotspur and Northern Ireland

Some sample pages from our training manual.  All of our drills are straightforward and easy to set up and we also provide a template for our mentorship talks.

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