It’s not every day you get the chance to be coached by a Manager of a National side but that’s exactly what happened when the Sussex FA contacted Whitehawk FC to see if our u18’s would be the players for a FA Licenced Coaches CPD session led by Pro Licence Fa Tutor and current manager of the Rwanda national side, Stephen Constantine.

A last minute proposal and with only a weeks notice Whitehawk were able to put on a special night so around 50 coaches from the Sussex and surrounding area could gain hours towards their annual allocation for their licence renewal.

The topic on Defending when outnumbered and out of shape started with a 5 v 2 with players learning about shape, communication and when to press and close down space. This progressed to 10 v 4 in a tight area which made it hard for players in possession to keep the ball whilst the coaching focus was always on the outnumbered defenders.

The floodlights were switched on and as the session progressed further into the evening the players and watching coaches could see how this developed into a half pitch phase of play with a goalkeeper and a back four working on being compact and keeping a shape whilst eight attacking players tried to break them down.

The session ended with a Q&A with some interesting topics being raised especially about how Steve became the manager of Rwanda – the answer being someone knew a man who would do it!!

A big thank you at the club to Keith, the groundsman, Nigel the General manager and Vice Chairman, Stella in the bar, our u18’s and to Steve Phythian at Sussex FA and especially to Stephen Constantine manager of Rwanda.

Jude MacDonald, Mark Seltzer, Sami El-Abd
Whitehawk u18’s management team

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