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George Berneanou - Goalkeeper in youth development ages

Welcome George , tell us a few things about yourself

I am a goalkeeper coach by choice not consequence. I come from a football family and my father was also a coach so I felt my coaching call early. Right away I was attracted to the prospect of constant improvement of the Goalkeeper. This position is special and has been changing dramatically the last few years. As a goalkeeper coach I decided I want to be an active part of that change rather than a recipient.

What is your current job/role?

This is my second year as a Head Goalkeeper coach for Viktora FC Koln in Germany. At the same time I am the assistant coach for the Greek National Team of mini Socca.

This past year I started and am involved in two projects. One is about the creation of a practical Psychological Training model for Goalkeepers and the second one is about testing and discovering new methods of evidencing and assessing Goalkeeper Performance.

My position in the mini Socca National Team is not only a great honour for me but also a unique opportunity to work with goalkeepers in a much more active role in the team.

Tell us about your dreams in Football Coaching.

My vision is of a much more exciting football sport. I dream of saves that are as exciting as goals are today. I wish to create Goalkeepers that are equivalent if not superior to the strikers that monopolise the interest and passion of football.

How important is Goalkeeper training?

In order to surpass the present we need to train the goalkeeper in ways that he has never been trained before. That is the reason we founded the 4th Corner Project. That project is the collective efforts and contributions of several scientists and coaches from different countries and sports, to elevate the level of training to a new high.

Right now we are focused on the application of mental imagery in the goalkeeper training and the use of goalkeeper performance evaluation methods to measure progress.

In order to surpass the present we need to train the goalkeeper in ways that he has never been trained before. That is the reason we founded the 4th Corner Project. That project is the collective efforts and contributions of several scientists and coaches from different countries and sports, to elevate the level of training to a new high.

Right now we are focused on the application of mental imagery in the goalkeeper training and the use of goalkeeper performance evaluation methods to measure progress.

I am one of the first Goalkeeper coaches that is using Virtual Reality in my training practice. VR is a tool that gives us the ability to collect data about movement, reaction, decision with accuracy and repetition. It offers recording and evaluating of Key Perfomance Indicators of goalkeeping never before measurable.

From what age does a child understand that he really wants to become a goalkeeper?

Our role as coaches is to allow young athletes to try any position they wish and support their decisions. During the Youth Development Phase (ages 9-12) athletes begin to express preference. That should not limit their ability to change their mind later.

At what age a child must start individual goalkeeper training?

During the Youth Development Phase (ages 9-12) we begin specialization by offering 1-2 training sessions on the specific position. The rest of the session should remain common for all. During those 1-2 trainings we teach the basics and in the rest they learn the outfield skills. This allows for the final choice of position to settle before the age of 12.

If a youth local team doesn’t have a goalkeeper coach, what can they do?

There are several options. You must include your goalkeepers in th team excersises. You can also work with an outside the club academy to train your goalkeepers a few times per week.

Do you train young Football players?

I enjoy working with young athletes. My academy 4 Goalkeepers and the Summer Goalkeeper Camps I have done are proof of that. Here in Germany I am responsible for the entire goalkeeping department and that includes overseeing the academy trainings as well as scouting for talent and transfers.

Congratulations for your channel in Youtube. You have more than 10.000 Subscribers. Tell us more about your this.

My Youtube channel https://www.youtube.com/c/4Goalkeepers started as a need to share my ideas and my knowledge. I believe that the Goalkeeper Coaching family should share everything and we as coaches should treat each other with solidarity, respect and professional support. We share the same passion and professional position and we should support and elevate each other so our profession will grow and evolve, not stay back because of petty and jealousy and lack of communication.

Do you have workouts on your channel that could be used by younger ages?

All the training session in the channel can be adopted for youth athletes in academy training. The coach would have to adjust the difficulty and complexity of the drills. For example reduction of shot power and distances and goal size will facilitate such change.

Show us an example.

Here are a few sessions that are easily adjustable for youth training:

George, thank you very much for the interview and your time.I wish you the best in your career.

Best Regards

Spiros



For more informations follow George Berneanou and 4GK

https://www.the4thcornerproject.com/

https://www.youtube.com/c/4Goalkeepers

Let's face it! Realism is an element that should not be missed in any training session.

Nowadays, training tends to be repetitive without giving the necessary emphasis to detail. And to some basic football habits, every coach should emphasize not only the quality of the energy but also the way it is achieved.

Find out more!

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