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Women football growing amongst Pacific

A FIFA coordinated training for women’s football coaching is underway in Samoa this week.

The training puts the spotlight on empowering women football as well as preparing coaches to handle and coach teams.

Participants will learn how to address differences between the men’s and the women’s game as well as the emphasis by FIFA to empower women to compete in the game.

“There isn’t much of a difference. But most of the coaches we are training are working with females and majority of the coaches are females as well, so we can talk about the game in general and then where the differences come in, the physical side and strategy-wise,” said FIFA training coordinator
Nicola Demaine.

Demaine says the differences between men and women football are things that must be taken into consideration.

“We deviate around the physical side of the game, physically obviously women and men are different physically, strength-wise and fitness-wise, and then there is the much needed spotlight on preventing injuries, women are more predisposed to ankle and knee injuries than men,” added Demaine.

“This is a next level course for them, so they can take that knowledge they already have and do a harder course for them,” she added.

The shift of the course level is a sign says Demaine, that Samoa and the Pacific as a whole is growing rapidly in football, having moved into a more intermediate level as opposed to the beginners level trainings that have been done recently.

“In general around the Pacific we do the basic courses, but today this is an intermediate course. Because we’ve got all these competitions where the players are improving and the coaches need to improve as well,” she said.

“The knowledge of the coaches now that I’ve worked with and players you see on the field growing immensely and its very pleasing to see,” she added.

Demaine highlighted the difference in the three year stretch from 2012 to 2015, where Samoa’s womens team came from a basic long ball play and random kicking to a silver medal in the OFC championships last year. Loop Samoa

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