St Andrews praised after hosting SFA coaching course

License training at the University of St Andrews.
License training at the University of St Andrews.

The University of St Andrews hosted the Scottish Football Association (SFA) on campus for its annual UEFA Coaching License training courses.

The arrival in Fife marked the first time in two decades that these world-renowned courses have been held away from Largs on the west coast.

Due to development and construction at other facilities, the SFA were in search of a new location and decided upon St Andrews as their new destination.

Greeted with sun and blue skies in the Kingdom, the candidates and instructors alike have thoroughly enjoyed their time in St Andrews and praised the high quality of both the athletic and residential facilities.

The SFA prides itself on developing coaches in a well-rounded and holistic manner, to prepare them for whatever form of coaching they wish to pursue.

From current professional players to grassroots coaches, a wide range of candidates have been in attendance to share their individual knowledge and pursue the next level in their coaching qualifications.

The UEFA A-Level Intro course took place until June 2 before the nine day B-Level course got underway.

Using the full range of University facilities, candidates haddaily classroom lectures and workshops in David Russell Apartments on topics such as video analysis and sport psychology, and learn practical coaching skills with sessions on the football pitches at University Park.

Many stayed in university accommodation at David Russell Apartments (DRA) and Agnes Blackadder Hall, with breakfast and lunch catered by the cafeterias.

Greig Paterson, coach education manager for the SFA, said: “The vibe and the atmosphere in the apartments was great, people enjoyed it.

“The catering, as well, was superb, good choices every day.”

Many participants complimented University Park’s facilities, from the football pitches to the indoor fitness suite, and have noted the vast improvements that have been made in recent years.

Irish footballer Noel Hunt, who played in Scotland with Dunfermline and Dundee United before moving south, last visited University Park nine years ago, and said: “The change in the place is fantastic; it has really flourished.”

Jim Fleeting, the SFA’s Director of football development, added: “St Andrews is just fantastic - it really is an ideal place to come.”