Online Courses

SURVIVING YOUR FIRST SOCCER SEASON The North American Guide for Parent-Volunteers and New Coaches

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SURVIVING YOUR FIRST SOCCER SEASON The North American Guide for Parent-Volunteers and New CoachesHome$47.00 (USD)

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A very informative and enjoyable course for parent-volunteers and youth coaches who are new (or fairly new) to soccer.  Based upon extensive empirical research in children’s sport, Surviving Your First Soccer Season will provide you with the understanding and essential tools you need to successfully lead a youth soccer team for the very first time. Delivered in four, 20-25 minute instructional videos without assessments, this course uses a ‘game-based approach’ that keeps players learning, having fun and coming back for more. The course is particularly relevant for those soccer parents and coaching volunteers who may not wish to undertake more formal coaching qualifications at the present time.  Over 100 easy-to-implement soccer games and a certificate of completion are included.

Meet the Author

Rick Fenoglio is uniquely qualified to author and present this North American soccer resource.  Rick is an American soccer coach educator who grew up playing basketball, American football, baseball and other sports in Illinois and Tennessee, before falling in love with soccer.  A former semi-professional player and NCAA Southeastern Conference MVP, Rick has recently retired from a 30-year position as a Senior Lecturer in Football and Sport Science at Manchester Metropolitan University (UK). In this role he worked as a researcher and consultant to Manchester United FC (Academy), Manchester City FC, other soccer academies in the northwest and major governance organizations in the UK.  In the mid-2000s, he co-founded a policy-changing children’s sport ethics movement entitled ‘Give Us Back Our Game!’ He is internationally recognized as a youth sport leader in the areas of small-sided games, ethics in grassroots (REC) soccer and soccer skill development.  Currently he is a Youth Football Scout for Manchester City Football Club and lives in Kent, near London, with his partner Corinne….and has two amazing daughters.

Why join the course?

A first youth soccer coaching season can be daunting. This is particularly true for  those whose backgrounds and expertise may be in other North American sports (such as American/Canadian football, baseball, basketball, hockey,  etc) or have little or no coaching / sporting experience.  This resource was written with this in mind.  In it you will learn how to create optimal learning environments for your players and deliver activities that are fun, engaging, varied, developmental, and work on specific soccer skills and abilities.  We will also take a look at different coaching styles and philosophies, the history and culture of soccer, tips for successfully navigating the environment found in ‘Game Days’ and more.

What topics will you cover?


The Surviving Your First Soccer Season course is self-paced, packed with content and designed to fit in with your home / work schedule and other commitments.  You can pause, take a break, repeat or go back over any information presented in any module at any time you wish.  


  • Section 1 – What IS This Game?  [History, Culture, Global Styles]
  • Section 2 – Let’s Build a Field  [Soccer Field Lines and Markings]                  
  • Section 3 – Positions, Formations and Numbers  [Understanding these]
  • Section 4 – Term Time Space Invaders   [Essential Soccer Descriptors]
  • Section 5 – Somebody Please Explain Offsides!  [Essential Soccer Rules]


  • Section 1 – Give Us Back Our Game! [Coaching Philosophies]
  • Section 2 – Off to Designing Practices Class I:  S=E+A  [Practice Environment]
  • Section 3 - Off to Designing Practices Class II - Qu’est-Ce Que Tu Fais? [Practice Activities]
  • Section 4 - The Golden Rule of Specificity [Motor Neurology and Adaptation]


  • Section 1 – The Manchester United 4 v 4 Scheme [Benefits of Small-Sided Games]
  • Section 2 – Soccer Burger  [Adding Variation / Conditions]
  • Section 3 – Combining the Four Corners [Transfer of Training]
  • Section 4 – Games Galore [Six Effective Small-Sided Games]


  • Section 1 – Positive, Negative / Hyper Competition [Effect on Game  Environment] 
  • Section 2 – The Night Before: Nutrition, Planning, Sleep [Effect on Player Energy]
  • Section 3 – Leading By Example, Managing Expectations and Warm-up [Tips]
  • Section 4 – In-Play Coaching, The Power of Fun, Positivity [Effective Coaching]

What will you achieve?

From this course you will achieve a greater understanding of the ‘why’ using fun, small-sided games will improve soccer skill development, young player motivation and active sports engagement. You will also learn ‘how’ to implement these successfully, which will make your coaching journey MUCH more manageable, relaxing, enjoyable and rewarding. The course will help you achieve greater confidence in your coaching and an improved knowledge of varied aspects of this beautiful game.

After viewing the four modules and downloading the 100 Small-Side Games booklet, you will be asked to sign to validate your attendance and receive your course completion certificate.  

Who is the course for?

This resource has been uniquely created for American and Canadian parent-volunteers and new coaches who may have limited prior experience in the sport of soccer.  At times, comparisons are made to the most popular North American sports.  Although the majority of the focus and discussion is on young (under 18) players, the insights and concepts presented are applicable to all soccer learners and other contexts as well (such as PE classes in schools).  The course is particularly relevant for those soccer parents and coaching volunteers who are unsure, or do not wish to undertake more formal soccer coaching qualifications at the present time.