As we approach the end of what has been an exciting domestic football season, it is worth reflecting on what I consider to be the most outstanding achievement: the flourishing of youth.
The Scottish FA has this year demonstrated its commitment to developing future internationalists with the implementation of our seven Regional Performance Schools but I am aware that in Scottish football, as in many passionate countries, patience is not a virtue.
It is heartening, therefore, to see our clubs embrace the philosophy of dedicating more time to our own young players. While the debate continues on league reconstruction, and in particular the financial implications of any such change, the need to be more prudent and imaginative has spawned a new batch of Scottish players on the scene.
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Tagged acottish fa, football, Girls at SFA Performance Schools, leigh griffiths, mark wotte, performance schools, Performance Strategy, Scotland, Scotland National Youth Teams, scotland youth, sfa, youth development, youth football players
REACTION: John Kennedy, John Herron and Stuart Findlay reflect on Celtic’s Youth Cup Final victory
GOALS: All four goals from last night’s #YouthCupFinal between Dunfermline and Celtic.
Scottish FA Performance Manager Neil Mackintosh blogs about an education programme which has enhanced the Performance School system and has acted as a safety mechanism for professional footballers’ off-field futures for the last ten years.
This week the Scottish FA celebrates 10 years of the Modern Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence programme, which has benefited over 1600 footballers in Scotland.
Pupils of school-leaving age across the country will soon be making important decisions on what career paths they wish to pursue. Talented young footballers are no different and will be weighing up signing their first full-time professional contracts.
This week’s guest blog is written by Rasmus Ankersen, best-selling author of The Gold Mine Effect.
How to build a Scottish gold mine
Why have the world’s best middle distance runners grown up in the same Ethiopian village with 17,000 inhabitants? Why are 137 of the world’s 500 best female golfers from South Korea? How does one athletic club in Kingston, Jamaica, succeed to produce most of the world’s best sprinters? What is the secret behind Brazil’s mass production of soccer superstars?
For six intense months I travelled the world, training and living with the world’s best athletes and their coaches in an attempt to answer these questions. This week, I visited the Scottish FA to present my conclusions to coaches and parents involved in the exciting new Performance Schools initiative. Continue reading
I can only share the disappointment and frustration suffered by the Scotland supporters and our national coach, Gordon Strachan, after the results in our FIFA World Cup qualifying double header against Wales and Serbia; defeats that leave us bottom of Group A and with no prospect of reaching the finals in Brazil next year.
Fifteen years have passed since we last qualified for a major tournament. It is too long for a country with such a proud history and such a passionate support. There has been no shortage of opinion or debate as to why Scottish football finds itself in a period of downturn but we have two options: we either wallow in self-pity, or we address the reasons behind that decline. We have to change our philosophy and our approach to elite talent identification and development. To borrow the wisdom of Einstein: insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
GOALS: Scotland 3-0 Luxembourg
UEFA Under-21 Championship Qualifier
St Mirren Park, kick-off 7.30pm
Monday 25 March 2013