David Smith

Name:    David Scott

Current Position:   Founder/Head Goalkeeper Coach of ‘BeNumber1 Coaching’

Years Coaching Goalkeepers:   8 Years

What is your background?

I got into the coaching side of things at the young age of 18. At first I balanced playing competitively, with volunteering my coaching services at local boys clubs. During the next few years, I worked towards achieving the relevant SFA Coaching Certificates.   Then, in 2013, my coaching career was to elevate to new heights.   I founded my own Coaching Academy, ‘BeNumber1 Coaching’. Whilst coaching at BeNumber1, my services were recommended to Glasgow Rangers F.C Girls, where I would ultimately be offered the role of Goalkeeper Coach within their Youth Set-up at Under 15 level. After a few months of working within the Youth Set-up, I was promoted to the Rangers Ladies Senior Squad, to take up the role of Goalkeeping Coach.

What got you into coaching?

Unfortunately, my semi-professional playing career was brought to an abrupt end in 2009 due to a serious knee injury. This was extremely difficult for me, as I was only 21 years old at the time. After 3 unsuccessful operations throughout 3 long years, it was reluctantly decided that i would have to hang up the competitive gloves for good. However, instead of calling it quits and forgetting about my true passion, i decided to dedicate my time to helping other aspiring Goalkeepers, achieve their ultimate goals.

What is your coaching philosophy?

My biggest saying is, ‘There is no coaching bible’.
I believe that there is not one specific way, in which we should all be coaching our Goalkeepers. The game changes from country to country and each individual Goalkeeper has their own strengths and weaknesses. I believe that, as a coach, i have to have an open philosophy to coaching my Goalkeepers. I coach Goalkeepers from 6 years old, to adult level. I adapt my coaching style, to accommodate their specific needs.
I need to find the right balance and ultimately, improve my Goalkeeper to  meet the specific needs of their surroundings.

Who has been a mentor to your through your coaching career? Is there a coach who impacted you to get into coaching?

To be honest, no particular coach has individually impacted me. I learn from all different cultured coaches and take from them, what i believe will work within my coaching sessions.

Do you feel that the role and importance of a goalkeeper coach has been fully realized in the coaching community?

I believe, the importance of Goalkeeper Coaching, is growing. However, within my country the number of ‘Full Time’ Goalkeeper Coaches, employed within professional clubs, is very low. I think this is ultimately down to finance alone. Can i see this statistic increasing over the next 10 years? Definitely.

Looking back, how have you seen your coaching develop from when you first started to now?

Undoubtedly. Working first hand with professional Goalkeepers, improves you as a coach each session. When i first started out coaching, I referred to it as a hobby. Now, I’m proud to call it a profession.

How do you design your training sessions?

Each session is different. Depending on the age, ability level, quantity of Goalkeepers, my sessions can vary to extreme measures.  At professional level, I accommodate the teams specific tactics for our next match, into the sessions throughout the week.

How do you motivate your keepers behind your first string to ensure competition for the position?

The biggest thing for me, is to ensure my Goalkeepers and I, are a family. We are in it together. If they lose a goal, I lose a goal. Having such camaraderie, goes a long way in keeping all the Goalkeepers happy.

What is your ultimate coaching goal?

To have coaches working for me, within my Academy. To ultimately have my Academy, BeNumber1 Coaching, delivering coaching sessions nationally.  In doing this, it will allow me to follow my top goal, of being a full time Goalkeeper Coach within the game, at professional level.

Any advice for young goalkeeper coaches just entering their careers?

Experience, experience, experience. Get yourself out there as much as you can. You can have all the coaching badges in the world. But, nothing compares to having the experience of working within many environments.  But, most importantly, when coaching our future generation of Goalkeepers…make it FUN!

If you weren’t a goalkeeper coach, what do you think you would be?

Easy…a professional Goalkeeper.