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Coaching drills delivered by England under-15 and Millwall Lionesses manager Kay Cossington at Shrub End Community Centre recently were hailed as "motivating and inspiring" by Essex County FA Girls' & Women's Development Officer, Emma Wake.
The County's Female Coaching Association welcomed Kay to Colchester with the aim of boosting the knowledge of grassroots coaches by offering the unique opportunity to watch a national coach deliver practical and theory sessions. They were also able to ask questions in an open forum alongside the Colchester United Female Centre of Excellence Director about talent identification, Long Term Player Development (LTPD) and the England set up. Forty-two coaches attended, representing twenty clubs across the County.
"I hope Kay's influence rubbed off onto those witnessing her sessions," commented Emma. "I've since received e-mails expressing enthusiasm after watching the practical as Kay was dynamic, motivating and inspiring. On a personal level she totally left me buzzing and I'm really looking forward to next season!"
Kay began by highlighting her 'back-to-front' method of session planning, Emma continuing: "She always plans what she wants to end on then decides on the technical content and the warm-up." Her session comprised a dynamic warm-up, including movement, passing and changing direction, Kay then incorporated Speed, Agility and Quickness (SAQ) Equipment, stressing the importance of integrating this into all sessions for young players. The same exercise then moved on to an opposed possession drill, challenging the players both physically and technically.
The middle part of the session involved a four-goal 'Keepaway' game with an overload on one team. One side played with eight players and one with four. The eight individuals worked on keeping the ball while the four concentrated on gaining possession. Each time the four players won the ball they attempted to score in one of the goals. Kay then progressed this by introducing two goalkeepers who had to cover the four targets.
Finally, the session ended on a function that concentrated on the roles of a full back, working on the right back in two thirds of a pitch. Kay demonstrated different pictures a full back should see when gaining possession while each player was shown different movement patterns to ensure that the full back had numerous options.
Kay's Q & A covered many topics ranging from overuse and over-coaching to player rotations and youngsters not having specific player positions at a young age, as well as goalkeeper rotations. The group also discussed the difference between female German players and the English and what is required for the latter to catch up.
Elsewhere on the day, the Colchester United under-16 squad, who had taken part in all the earlier drills, were presented with their league medals for the Eastern Region Centre of Excellence League as well as familiarising themselves with the South East Combination trophy the ladies' team secured the year before.
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