[This article was written by a football coach who has endured the jobs merry-go-round.]
Soccer Coach Jobs
Securing a soccer coaching job, or a coaching role in football is – to a significant degree of the time – about two things.
- Either your contacts in the game allow you into a pretty secretive world of ‘X FC are looking for someone,’ or
- You are willing to enter a position where you will work for next to nothing.
Without those two things, you are left trawling the web for openings. The trouble is, because of reason one (above), many of these advertised jobs may already be gone.
My first football coaching job, I clearly remember, I found advertised on page 8 of a Google search. Patience is required. Over the years, whenever I’ve been searching, I will always go to page 8 (at least!) when I do a search. You never know where that right opportunity is buried.
I have friends in other industries who swear by LinkedIn. As a soccer job search tool, it is very difficult to find work on the platform, though. Yes, you may ‘connect’ with someone who has a grasp of certain opportunities, but chances are they will recommend friends or much closer contacts than just the random guy (you!) they connected with on the platform.
During a spell of unemployment, as a football coach based in the UK, I nearly lost my mind on LinkedIn. You search for ‘football’ jobs, and the platform would spit out 90% US-based American Football roles. You type in ‘soccer’ and, again, you are taken to high-school or university positions in the US (primarily). Of course, this is less of an issue for my US colleagues!
The irony was on me, though, as I was first alerted to my current position on the platform. As much as they may frustrate you, you cannot afford to cut away any leads!
In terms of leads, growing your connections is important. No matter what, engage with everyone who engages with you, regardless of their position relative to yours. I have a friend who won’t engage with anyone ‘below him.’ I believe he’s missing out on potential gold-dust and future benefits.
If you are approaching people for favours or advice, make sure you are brief, but that you also offer them something. Because I’ve compelled myself to engage with everyone, I probably reply to people I shouldn’t. Most in the industry will just ignore a message if it’s all about what they can do for you. Football already has enough of those people. So, instead of a copy and paste message to everyone, be personal and offer them something too. Hopefully, reciprocity will then compel them to help you too.
If you do not have a profile in the game, ask yourself, ‘What is making you stand out when you apply for a position’? This may be as simple as using blog posts or editing tactical videos. It could be videos of you working with players, or indeed work you’ve published, or websites you contribute to.
Football Coach Job Websites
There are a number of job sites for the football industry that are not very difficult to find with a quick search – Football Jobs, Global Sports Jobs, MLS/EFL websites and, of course, club and FA sites. Unfortunately, many of the websites include non-technical jobs. You click on a tab that suggests there are vacancies at Liverpool FC, only to find the positions are for chefs, stewards, or for staff in the club shop.
The very best job platform I have come across is the British Football Coaches Network, who post soccer jobs daily, both in the UK and abroad. It costs only a couple of pounds a month and the jobs posted are genuine and vary from part-time roles in the UK, to National team coaches abroad. The scope is broad. Some football jobs will suit young, footloose people, or those already embedded in the game.
A big problem with those trying to enter the industry is the ‘secrecy’ around jobs (very few are advertised), so unless you are well connected, have your ear to the ground, or have an agent that navigates the ground – listening for you – finding them will remain a problem. When I receive a call from a connection about a job, they generally whisper it, and the call lasts about 30 seconds, such is the secretive nature of it all.
Ironically, there is a double-edged sword here, in that there is also a problem when soccer coach jobs are advertised and easy to find. When this happens the position gets flooded with applicants, even those who do not meet the specification for the role. If the role requires a UEFA A Licence, for example, chances are there will be as many B Licence applicants. What this does is force your CV to battle it out with a typhoon-load of others that shouldn’t be there.
So, three things to give yourself the best chance of securing that dream coaching job – grow your contacts (so you can get the nod at the right time), search the ‘right’ websites and the broader web thoroughly, and stay persistent. Good luck!
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Do you have more advice to add? Please email info@BennionKearny.com