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UEFA´s Study Group Scheme

UEFA boosts coach education

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 With the overall well-being of European football in mind, coach education is a No1 priority amid UEFA´s list of activities. The European body´s coach education work has been given a massive thumbs-up from football personalities across Europe and displays an impressive sense of innovation and care.

To encourage the exchange of ideas and passing on of good practices, UEFA organises a series of conferences and workshops, featuring coaching experts and eminent technicians. A specific course for coach educators is held every two years – most recently in Brussels in 2012. Coaching ideas and trends are also debated at the highest levels of the game. The UEFA Elite Coaches´ Forum takes place at UEFA´s Nyon headquarters at the start of each season, and the national coaches meet every two years after each FIFA World Cup and UEFA EURO.

One of those leading technicians, Chelsea FC´s Rafael Benítez, emphasises the necessity for top-quality coach education as offered by UEFA and its national associations. "I think that to improve society you need education; and to improve the level of the coaches, the education is crucial," he says. "People want to learn, they are keen to learn – and the possibility to [give] them this knowledge, I think, it is an important part."

In 2011, UEFA initiated an innovative student exchange programme with the goal of giving UEFA Pro licence students the opportunity to discuss ideas and take on board best practice. Many students are former top flight and national-team players setting out on a new path as a coach. The objective of the scheme is to afford Pro licence students the chance of an international exchange as well as access to UEFA, its tutors and educational materials.

Coach education is also an important element of UEFA´s Study Group Scheme, in which groups of national associations come together to swap invaluable advice to help each other in the constant quest for improvement across the continent.

Coaching coaches to bring out the best in footballers – a component of UEFA´s technical education palette that will continue to bear impressive fruit and help ensure European football´s continued good health.

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