During the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) convention in Indianapolis Jan. 16-20, Westside United’s U12 boys’ team was asked to help demonstrate with Mick Priest, Oldham Athletic FC’s youth team coach and centre of excellence manager and former Manchester United’s academy coach.
Priest ran a session based on a training method that Manchester United uses. Chris Wey, the Westside United’s U12 coach, got training in the method last year so he’s been implementing it with his players.
“He requested that our boys come in, since they kind of knew the ins and outs of it,” Wey said. “They came and ran a great session.”
Coaches from all levels and across the world flew into the week-long convention held at the Indianapolis Convention Center.
“There are meetings for college coaches, high school coaches, and all sorts of symposiums, lectures, and the demos which were what my boys were part of,” Wey said. “It’s kind of like a big networking thing. You’re sharing your ideas and things you’ve seen be successful.”
As important as networking is at the convention, learning is just as important.
“Coaches show different sessions that they may run to address parts of the game for different ages and both sides, boys and girls,” Wey said.
Wey coaches the U12 boys and is also the director for the U8 and U9 boys’ academy. He also won the 2011 Indiana boys travel coach of the year.
While happy with the award, Wey said it came because of those around him.
“It just meant that people are not even noticing the work I’m doing because I get all of this work done with the assistant coaches that I have,” Wey said. “Just the work that our club specifically Westside is doing with educating our coaches and putting the proper coaches in the right age group. It wasn’t really anything about me, it was more about kudos for our club.”