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Coerver® Coaching Co-founder Alf Galustian recently interviewed Gerard Houllier in Paris to discuss the work that they have done together over the last 20 years including the impact that the Coerver Coaching programme has had on elite player and coach development in France during this period.

Gérard Houllier OBE – Profile

Clubs Managed and Coached:

• RC Lens
• Paris Saint-Germain FC
• Liverpool FC, with whom he won the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup in 2001 (see above image)
• Olympique Lyonnais FC, where he won two Ligue 1 championships
• Aston Villa FC
• Red Bull, Current Head of Global Soccer

International Career:

• French national team coach between 1992-1993
• Technical Director French Football Federation, 1988-1998
• FIFA World Cup™ Champion, France 1998
• Technical Director French Football Federation, 2008-2010
• Member of the UEFA and FIFA Technical Committees for the 2006 and 2010 FIFA World Cup™ Finals

AG: As always, good seeing you, what are you doing now?.

GH: Currently I am Global Sporting Director for Red Bull Football, we have 5 professional football units.
Austrian side FC Red Bull Salzburg, Germany’s RB Leipzig , New York Red Bulls from the US A, Red Bull Brasil and the Red Bull Ghana academies.

AG: it’s almost 20 years since you invited me to come to the Clairefontaine National Training Centre. Please go through the background that preceded this invitation.

GH: As a professional coach and then as technical director of the French Federation, I had heard about Wiel Coerver and his methods, but to be frank, myself and many of my staff were a little sceptical. We agreed that focus on technical teaching was important, but from what we saw in the work, at that time, many of us felt it did not relate or move on to game conditions quickly enough. When I met you and you explained to me your ideas on technical teaching, I was keen to see for myself.

AG: I remember well the first course I did for you at Clairfointaine in 1994; to tell you the truth I really felt nervous because there were so many high profile coaches.

GH: In fact if you recall, the first course you did was for our 15 National Team Coaches; This included Aime Jacquet, the National Team Coach and coaches from every French National Team men and women, so no wonder you were nervous. I was honest with you at the beginning, I left it to our National Team Coaches judgement, whether they liked what you presented or not. As you know they all came back to me, after your session, saying they were convinced that this teaching could be of great importance to us in France. I have to tell you that one of your biggest supporter was Aime Jacquet, who went on to win the World Cup.

The second course you did for us in the early days of the following season, was for the 120 National and Regional Coaching Directors of France (see below image). This course led to the many invitations you received to teach players and coaches at top pro clubs and our regional training centres.

AG: You have jogged my memory, yes those first two courses were crucial, I remember that I presented Ideas on Technical Teaching to Elite Players and how I thought Coerver had evolved. Do you remember the feedback that you got on that?.

GH: Yes, that day you convinced even the most sceptical of coaches, that Coerver was about teaching effective use of skills and not just skill for its own sake. Many of our coaches had seen Wiel Coerver work or had his videos; you showed us the evolution of the method and how it had changed and moved on.

AG: I remember shortly after these initial courses coming back to Clairefointiane at your request to video some of our work for your Official Library.

GH: Yes and to this date almost 20 years later, the videos and work you did are still used as a resource for our coaches all over France.

AG: I was lucky to continue working with you for over 17 years all over France.

GH: As technical director I received reports of all your work. I recall especially those at Auxerre, Marseilles, Lyon, Bordeaux and Paris.I really feel your effort and work in France over so many years, has helped us produce so many good creative players.

AG: I have been lucky enough to work at many Federations and Top Clubs around the World, and in my opinion, the French Youth Development System under you, is the best that I have seen.

GH: Thank you, we worked hard and Youth Development was a priority for us. Winning the World Cup validated our ideas and new orientation in our work.

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Kristine Lilly (see below with Coerver® Co-founders, Alf Galustian & Charlie Cooke), two time FIFA World Cup™ champion and two time Olympic gold medallist and Coerver® Coaching, the world’s number one soccer skills teaching method have launched a new E-book “Girls Soccer: Dream, Believe, Achieve”.

“Girls Soccer: Dream, Believe, Achieve” is an inspiring Ebook teaching excellence in life and soccer.
The aim of the E-book is to raise awareness for Girls soccer and become the authority on coaching Girls soccer and life skills.

The E-book uses a mixture of HD video, illustrations, text and the Coerver® System to teach coaches, parents and players about:

• Kristine’s inspirational story of a successful woman and champion
• Kristine’s life and soccer coaching tips for girls
• Coerver® Coaching and Kristine’s essential practices for coaches of girls

Kristine Lilly said “I have been using the Coerver method since I was a really young player. It certainly helped me in my career and I strongly believe it’s the best way to coach players. I believe “Girls Soccer: Dream, Believe, Achieve” will help female players improve their life and soccer skills.”

Coerver® Coaching co-founder and Chelsea legend Charlie Cooke said, “We are working closely with Kristine to help develop the next generation of skilful female players and coaches globally. Kristine’s playing career is second to none in world soccer and her insights and life lessons are sure to help all players and coaches”.

What’s inside the Ebook:

• 74 page interactive Ebook that you can easily download to your computer, tablet or mobile device

• The system to coaching Girls to soccer and life success told through Kristine’s inspiring life story.
Guaranteed to Motivate and Inspire your players

• 72 HD videos, that will help improve your player

• 24 practice illustrations, showing you the practice purpose, set up, action, variations and important player and coaches tips

• Coerver® Coaching’s NEW Skills Wheel system. 5 ESSENTIAL skills that each of your players should have

• The Coerver® Coaching Skills test in HD video and accompanying illustrations

• Kristine’s ESSENTIAL home study exercises. Inspire your player to practice more at home.
Perfect to view these videos in your back yard, at the park on your smart phone or tablet

• Watch an overview video NOW at

About the authors:

Kristine Lilly was a member of the United States women’s national soccer team for 24 years (see below image). She is the most capped men’s or women’s soccer player in the history of the sport, gaining her 352nd and final cap against Mexico in a World Cup qualifier in November 2010. Kristine played in five FIFA World Cup finals, winning two World Cup championships. She also played in three Olympic Games, winning the gold medal twice. She was a four time all American at the University of North Carolina while also winning four NCAA National Championships.

Alfred Galustian has gained a reputation over the last 30 years as being one of the leading technical skill teaching experts in the world. This knowledge and reputation has seen Alf working with some of the world’s leading federations and clubs, which includes the Premier League, French Football Federation, Football Federation Australia, Japan Football Association, Arsenal, Bayern Munich, Real Madrid CF and Newcastle United.

Charlie Cooke played for Aberdeen and Dundee in the Scottish First Division before joining Chelsea in the English First Division, where he played for the next 11 years. He made 380 league and cup appearances for the Blues and played in four cup finals, winning the English F.A. Cup in 1970 against Leeds and the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1971 against Real Madrid. He also played 16 times for the Scottish National Team and a World Select Team in 1979. He shares the Chelsea club record of three Player of The Year awards with Gianfranco Zola and in 2005, Chelsea’s centenary celebration year; he was selected for the club’s All-Time XI. Charlie is the co-founder of Coerver® Coaching and a Director in the Americas since its creation in 1984.

Coerver® Coaching co-founders Alfred Galustian and Charlie Cooke developed the program from 29 years of knowledge and work around the world at all levels of the game – from grass roots to leading federations, clubs, managers and stars of international soccer.

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With just over 2 months to the launch of the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma 2013 in the UK, preparations are being made to ensure that this is the biggest and best series of courses yet. Since the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma launched in 2011, over 800 coaches from all levels of the game and from across the world have participated on the 2-day course under the expert tutelage of Coerver® Co-founder and world renowned specialist skills coach, Alf Galustian (Below images – Youth Diploma 2012 at Manchester City FC).

The Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course not only provides a rare opportunity to learn from Alf’s 30 years of global youth development experience but also the opportunity to participate on an official, authorised Coerver® Coach Education course, which through the Youth Diploma has been the first time in the organisations 29 year history where this opportunity has been available to external coaches.

The 2013 Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma, in association with FourFourTwo Performance will be available in only 3 locations in England this year with all courses being hosted at Professional Football club training facilities. First stop is Birmingham City FC on the 1st & 2nd June 2013, we then head down to London with Fulham FC on the 15th & 16th June 2013 and then finally we head back north to host the third and final course at Coerver® Partner Club, Stoke City FC on 29th & 30th June 2013.

The purpose of the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma is to give attendees, from all levels of the game, a greater understanding of how to plan & deliver more effective coaching sessions. The focus of the course is the Coerver® Coaching Session Planner which provides a quick & easy solution for coaches who would like to construct weekly, monthly or even season long programmes using proven, high quality drills & games developed over 29 years by Coerver® Coaching.

Coerver® Co-founder and course tutor, Alf Galustian (see above image), said of the course “We had never had an authorized Coerver® pathway for Coaches until the last year, and we’ve been around 29 years, and we’re in 23 countries. Our new Diploma course is designed for Coaches who work with young players from 8-15 years old. We designed the diploma asking the question, how can we help coaches construct sessions for the week or the whole season?. The new Coerver® DVD’s and books Charlie Cooke and myself have devised, which is called the Coerver® Coaching Session Planner; is a formula that any coach can use to construct their season’s sessions, we have built the diploma course around this new material”.

Coerver® UK Director, Scott Wright (below image working with Manchester City U11′S – Youth Diploma 2012) added “The Coerver Youth Diploma course is a must for all coaches, no matter the level of the game they work at. If we are to develop a bigger pool of technically balanced, effective game players in the UK, in my opinion, coaches need to have an understanding of the Coerver programme. We need to have not just coaches but teachers of the game who understand how to develop technical excellence in each young player who also must possess the ability to make the right decisions at the right time at game speed, under game pressure. Being a good decision maker without having the technical ability to execute the decision does not make an effective game player, neither does a player who has excellent technical ability but lacks good decision making. You have to find the balance and this, along with the element of how to plan effective sessions are two key areas that will be covered on the course”.

Since 2011, the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course has been attended by a range of people working at various levels of the game from parents who wanted to help their kids at home to coaches working with senior international players in the Champions League:

“These last two days on the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course certainly made me a better coach, I have been a fan of Coerver® for many years”.
Jose Morais, First Team Coach – Real Madrid CF (below image – Youth Diploma 2011 Birmingham City)

“The foundations of great teaching have always been championed by Coerver® who have taken football and created a system by which any child, through hard work and good teaching can master the basic ball skills, that then lead onto their application in skilful play.

We are passionate about our football and the belief that we must develop our players to be the best they can be. The Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma Course has just made this whole job so much easier.”
Carl Lander, Assistant Head Teacher – St Aubyns School, Essex

“I enjoyed the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course immensely, I feel the course did show me some variations on familiar themes and I enjoyed how both Alf and Scott presented the course”.
David Connolly, Southampton FC Striker

“I thought the Youth Diploma course was excellent, Coerver® is the building block on which all football should be taught. I thoroughly enjoyed the course and it has really encouraged me towant to become a better coach”.
Mark Williams, Grassroots Coach – Birmingham

“I thoroughly enjoyed the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course, and would recommend that all coaches working with young players should attend”.
Richard Beale, Reserve Team Manager – Birmingham City FC

“Many thanks to all of you for what to proved to be a well delivered and interesting course at the weekend. I personally have taken a great amount away from it and intend to use the system to help me plan and deliver my coaching sessions , although I think the real learning starts here!.”
Lee Foster – Coach (Bristol – UK)

“I would like to thank you for the wonderful Coerver Youth Diploma course this weekend at Fullham FC. As a master in Physical Education I was very pleased about the Coerver Methodology. Also as a UEFA B coach and youth co-ordinator of the U6-U12 age groups, I will definitely use this methodology. So once again, thanks a lot, you did a great job!!. Hopefully I can attend again next year with more coaches from our local club.”
Kris Hermans – Coach (Pellenberg – Belgium)

“Really enjoyed the course over the weekend, picked up lots of new ideas to take back into my sessions”
Ben Smith – Professional Footballer (Crawley Town FC – UK)

“Can I firstly say a big thank you for an excellent 2 days. The course was fantastic, far exceeding my wildest expectations (life changing as a coach) and with Alf Galustian delivering the course what can I say!!! The man’s a genius in my books. I have been following Coerver for over 10 years, I truly believe that the only and most effective way to learn this beautiful game is the COERVER way.”
Javid Mukhtar – Grassroots Coach/Parent (Essex – UK)

“First of all I’d like to thank you so much for a great course this weekend at Fulham FC, we all enjoyed it immensely. It was an honour and great pleasure to finally meet you all, and especially having Mr. Galustian teaching us. We went straight home and gave the training you did with the U12′s on Sunday with our girls, so we’re really on our way!!”
Mats Wold – Coach (Fyllingsdalen – Norway)

“First of all, I would like to say BIG THANK YOU to all the Coerver team. I really enjoyed the Coerver Coaching Youth Diploma course. Your lecture and practical sessions helped me to understand Coerver Coaching and I will recommend your course to all my friends working with young players. After your course I believe I became a better coach.”
Michal Bainski – Coach (Lodz – Poland)

“I would like to congratulate Coerver for the incredible Youth Diploma Course at Fulham FC. It was so helpful and interesting to me as a coach. I found Coerver Coaching on the internet two years ago and I now strongly believe that it is by far the most interesting and effective coaching method for developing young players, keep up the good work!!.”
Ahanasios Adamos – Coach (Athens – Greece)

At the time of writing, around 75% of all places for the 2013 Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma have been booked so to guarantee your place book now.

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Alf Galustian, Coerver® Coaching’s Co-Founder, will lead the organization’s first ever Residential Advanced Skills Camp for Coaches at the superb football training facilities in Crans Montana, Switzerland (see below image) between 26th-29th July 2013. The 3-day intensive course is expected to draw worldwide participation from Coerver® Coaching Licensee Instructors, Federation and Professional Academy Instructors, leading elite youth club coaches, and high profile VIP guests.

The residential course covers different, more advanced content than the popular Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma, attended by over 2000 coaches since its launch two years ago. Alfred Galustian commented: “This is our first residential coaches course in Coerver® Coaching’s 29-year history. We are confident it will help provide coaches involved with high-ability players the resources they need to help develop technical excellence in their players”.

Course Structure:

• Module 1: The Coerver® Approach to Successful Team Play
• Module 2: Play Like Spain
• Module 3: How to Create More Goal Chances
• Module 4: Position-Specific Technical Training
• Module 5: Pre-season the Coerver® Coaching Way

Coaches will also receive:

• Effective session plans covering all the modules (available in English, French, German and Spanish)
• Daily sessions to improve participants’ technical demonstration skills

The course fee is €699 including airport transfers from Geneva (flight are NOT included in the course fee), 3 nights 3* Room and Board, all course materials, and an adidas Coerver® Rain Jacket. Participation is limited to 75 external (non-Coerver® Licensee) participants. So early registration is advised. To find out more course details and to book your place, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

“These last two days on the Coerver® Coaching Youth Diploma course certainly made me a better coach, I have been a fan of Coerver® for many years”.
Jose Morais, First Team Coach – Real Madrid CF

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