BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN (2 August 2012) – The National FA of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) kicked off their three-day grassroots football coaching clinic this week with the knowledge that a strong grassroots programme is the basis for a strong national team.
The clinic is set to provide 40 participants the skills they need to coach grassroots-level football, and with plans in the pipeline for district-level Under-12 and Under-16 football leagues, the programme could not have come at a better time.
Not only is the clinic aimed at developing talented players and capable coaches, NFABD also hope that it will cement football’s status as the most popular sport in the country not only in terms of having the highest number of players registered in clubs but also in terms of fan-base.
Ultimately, the programme hopes to generate the coaching manpower needed to run NFABD’s grassroots football programme in line with FIFA’s goal to develop grassroots football.
The 40 participants are made up of physical education teachers, ex-national players, coaches and parents, and the three-day clinic will be was declared open by NFABD president Dato Paduka Abdul Rahman Mohiddin at the NFABD House along Jalan Pusat Persidangan.
“The purpose is to give everyone the opportunity to play football without any discrimination,” said NFABD assistant general secretary Mohd Taha Mohd Tahir to Brunei Times.
“The course is aimed at teaching the participants how to coach children under the age of 12 and how to cater coaching styles to different ages and we want to collaborate with the existing projects such as Projek Ikan Pusu (PIP) and Muara Vella Football Academy.
“We want to give the existing projects assistance and not just in equipment,” he added.
Mohd Taha’s insistence that there cannot be a strong national team without a strong grassroots programme rings true as many of the national players who won the Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy (HBT) in March started off in grassroots programmes such as PIP.
For Puspa Mohammad who grew up in Kg Ayer but still found space to play football the clinic will go a long way in providing children a valuable foundation at an early age.
“Football can be played anywhere and it should be simple, exciting and rewarding,” said the grassroots football instructor at NFABD and one of the two presenters at the course.
“There are 175 primary schools in the country, and I’m pretty sure all of them have a football team.
“So 175 teams, 20 players in each team – that is 3,500 children. They need to be playing small-sided games, and we have to teach them that fair play must always be respected,” he added.