‘Yes YOU. Now come on!’
‘I can’t do it surely’
‘Yes you can, stop being such a baby’
This was a conversation I was having with my better looking half (she is really hot!) last Sunday morning. The reason she was asking me to come over was our youngest daughter had a football match, and as luck would have it, one of her coaches had decided to call it a day. Step in super dad to the rescue
So basically there are 2 teams in my daughters squad, 1 called blacks 1 called white. Nothing separating them, nothing decided on ability or size, no malice or anything it’s just how they’ve split the team. For reference, it’s the same in all age groups at the club. My youngest is in the under 8’s, also a part of their white squad.
When the remaining coach explained to the parents there that he was riding solo and he needed someone to oversee that days match for the Whites, the first thing I thought was well if there’s no one here to do it, the kids won’t get to play. It also influenced my decision when I looked around and I was the only dad there that morning. Every cloud and all that. So on the back of my missus telling the coach I’d be happy to, I got to work.
20 minutes later and the kids are lined up ready to go, and there I was on the touchline next to my opposite number. He was kitted out in his teams jumper and shorts, clipboard in 1 hand bottle of Lucozade in the other. Me on the other hand was stood holding the last remnants of a can of Red Bull, wearing a pair of Under Armour shorts and a Hangman Adam Page T shirt. I’ll always be wrestling nerd first, football fanatic second, don’t judge me.
As the game kicked off, Mr opposition coach was belting out orders, ‘Alfie, get back, Louis push on, Freddy..’ blah blah blah whatever, I forget what he said. What irritated me was the fact he said something along the lines of ‘Run at that number 12, she can’t play football, she’s a girl’. The girl in question is my daughter. Right then you twat, you wanna play that game do you.
Early on the kids all just ran around trying to get the ball. Nothing major happened until around 10 minutes in. They made an early sub, so I had a quick tactics talk with the girl that can’t play football.
‘I know I’m your dad and shouldn’t give you any special treatment, but that dick head over there says you can’t play football (the look on her little face, bless), and I think that Alfie is his son (she asked which is Alfie, I said the little ugly kid with beady eyes) so when he gets the ball I want you on him as quick as you can and get that ball, yeah?’
‘Okay dad, I’ll try’
What followed around 20 seconds later can only be described as a proud dad moment mixed with a smug look and justification. Alfie, the little shit got the ball and did a stupid half turn thing and set off down the right. my little girl came steaming in and slid for the ball. I’m not saying this because it was my kid, but she won the ball perfectly and sent that arrogant little twat flying in the air, took a touch and played the ball over the top toward Joey, or James or someone, I don’t know I’m still picking their names up, he takes a few touches and buries the ball in the goal, 1-0 to us!
As Alfie was doing his best Neymar impression, he was still rolling around at this point, I looked at the coach and said ‘She actually can play football, as you’ve just seen’. He didn’t say anything. I win this round shit head.
This was my introduction in the world of youth coaching. After the game, a very close 5-4 loss, I was approached by all the mams of the players and pretty much they all asked the same thing, am I taking it on full time? It helps that I know most of them personally, and on the day the kids listened to me and listened to what I had to say. Again I thought if I don’t, who will? There’s 2 teams and 1 guy overseeing them both, so his time will be stretched and he won’t be able to give enough attention to either group. So I said yes, I will be the new Whites coach.
This is a new type of blog post for me. This will be a weekly thing chronicling my time as a youth team coach for the under 9’s of my local team. So here I am, a full time stock controller and logistics coordinator for a world wide food manufacturer turned part time youth coach. It’s as much a learning curve for me as it is for the kids.
For data protection and the ages of the children I am not going to be posting the name of the team or put pictures up, I’m sure you understand.
We have training a couple of times a week and have some friendlies lined up over the next few weeks, so there should be plenty to talk about.