This interview comes from Mick White, a British coach currently working in India! Check it out below…
Can you tell me a little bit about yourself?
I am a British coach working currently in the Indian I league. It is the 2nd tier of the football pyramid. I work as technical director for the club & also as reserve team manager for the men. As technical director, i oversee the 14 soccer schools based in Kerala & the school project run by the club. I recently attended the AFC Champions league with the women in Uzbekistan. Unfortunately, we arrive to find ALL Indian clubs were banned from playing. The ban was lifted 3 days after we arrived back to India.
What is it about your role that you love?
Development of players. Seeing a player progress from a point they feel they cannot improve then allowing them to see what can be done to raise their expectations. This is in a social aspect & not just physical or technical.
What have you found different from coaching in the UK?
In UK it is very much a case of who you know & not what you know. Clubs know that people will work long hours for low salary & exploit this. Abroad a British coach with experience is used to benefit the club & players. Sometimes the roles are multiple so the club can utilise the expertise of a coach in many areas. I am at the moment a head coach, a coach developer, mentor, analyst, & opposition analyst.
Are there any countries that you would love to coach in? If so, why?
I loved Japan & South Korea where the people are warm & helpful while the football is high quality with lots players wanting to learn. USA also but the limited visa availability restricts such moves.
Do you have a preferred style to coaching?
I think I guide more than anything. Allow the players to think what to do & where in a situation they can make the best decisions for the team. I do some commanding points but not too often. I also use a lot of questions to know that the players have understood.
What is your next step? What is your long term aim?
My next step is to remain at a club where you can work freely & see the progression of a team or individual(s). I would at some point coach at international level. Not huge, a small country at U16/U18 or in a development role to help coaches as well as players.
Any tips for other coaches out there in regard to coaching? What about tips for coaching abroad?
It’s a lonely place sometimes so you need to understand that you are alone so you need to feel confident in your ability. If you have family, (wife/husband etc.) They need to appreciate the job you do & you need their support 100%.
No job is perfect so you have to adapt to each culture or country.
Thanks to Mick for this Q+A – much appreciated! Keep checking out my twitter at @LloydOwers