The All India Football Federation (AIFF) is set to organize specialized online introductory courses for aspiring goalkeeping and futsal coaches. The AIFF GK Introductory Certificate course will take place from October 2-4, 2020, while the AIFF Futsal Introductory Certificate course will be held from October 9-11, 2020.
Savio Medeira, AIFF Head of Coach Education, mentioned that conducting the introductory courses online ensures optimum utilization of time and termed the initiative of organizing them as a “much-needed step”.
“In the absence of practical sessions owing to the current pandemic situation, organising higher-level courses such as A, B or C-certificate, that too online isn’t appropriate. However, such specialized introductory courses help use this time in the best possible manner – continuing the work that has been put in the last few months and moving forward together,” Medeira averred.
“These courses are of vital importance and I feel that it is a much-needed step.”
Since March this year, a number of online events have been organized for coaches across the country to keep them updated with the latest knowledge. These include online seminars, refresher courses in collaboration with the Sports Authority of India (SAI), special refresher courses for coach educators, the E-Pathshala initiative as well as an AIFF-SAI joint Special Reconversion Course.
Medeira stated that the goalkeeping course will help make ascending the pathway “quicker” for prospective coaches.
“Goalkeeping is a specialized course with the AFC. If you want to go for GK Level 1, you need to have the AIFF C & D Certificates. However, after taking the certificate course online, one needs to complete the physical sessions when they take place. If someone wants to continue on the goalkeeping pathway, you can finish the practicals, and move on to Level 1 – thus making the process faster.”
On similar lines, the pre-requisite of the C-Certificate has been removed for the futsal course, which means that anyone can join the “specialized futsal pathway” after completing the online Introductory Certificate course.
“The AIFF has laid a lot of emphasis on futsal and despite hurdles created due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the focus on futsal remains. Conducting the courses online will help maintain the interest and help coaches come on board.”
“We have done Futsal Level 1 courses in the past in Goa & Mumbai. Previously, we had a pre-requisite of C-certificate first and then it was lowered it to D-certificate. Now, they have been removed as futsal is a highly specialized course. Anybody can be a part of the Introductory Course and then go directly to Level 1, without getting the C & D certificates. We now have a specialized pathway for futsal – like for scouting,” Medeira stated.
“We shall have local instructors for both courses – goalkeeping and futsal, which is another important development,” he added.