This was one of the challenges issued to members of the newly formed Football Coaches Association, that was established Sunday evening, (2nd December, 2012), following a one day seminar and launch at the Football House on Lozack Road, Basseterre.
General Secretary of the St. Kitts and Nevis Football Association, Mr. Stanley Jacobs, who was a guest speaker at the seminar, along with Minister of Sport, Glenn Phillip, told the coaches that they need to embrace professionalism at all times, in terms of their character, dress code and conduct.
Jacobs told them that they ought to strive for excellence in the application of their work as coaches, at the various levels of the sport.
The General Secretary assured the coaches that the SKNFA stands behind them to provide whatever support and guidance that is necessary. But he also admonished them to hold themselves at higher standards, suggesting that their new organization should not only be designed to unite coaches, but should also focus on the development of the members and the sport generally.
He reminded them that they have to begin to professionalize the environment around football, if they are to really advance the sport. Recognizing that the journey has taken some 8 years before the coaches association was finally established; Jacobs assured the founding members that history would record the pioneers who moved from talk, to action, to give life to the body.
In his address, Minister of Sport, Glenn Phillip, indicated that “Coaches have been and continue to be the unseen, extra, unregulated player on the field. He or she brings coordination to the efforts of the team during each game, as the skill of each player would be easily defeated where cooperation and coordination are lacking.”
It was the opinion of the Sport Minister that winning teams begin with winning coaches, for it is the quality of the coaching that one sees when one regards the conditioning and drive of the team. “The strength of coaching directly correlates to the team’s ability to develop and execute game plans, so that together the team is able to meet and surpass the often unforeseen pressures of play,” said Phillip.
The Minister, himself a former National basketball player, told the football coaches that teams often win on the strength of coaching. Teams build capacity, he said, that begins with the standards that are set by the coaching staff-because coaches are team leaders and builders, said the minister.
He said Sunday’s launch of the Football Coaches Association suggests that the coaches in the federation understand the importance of their role, so much so that they refuse to leave their success to chance. They are prepared, he said, to go the extra mile and organize themselves in their roles as team leaders and builders.
The St. Kitts and Nevis Football Coaches Association is headed by Austin “Dico” Huggins.