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rupeshpopatfulhamfootballclub

Name: Rupesh Ropat
Football Club: Fulham 
Role: Academy Support Coach
ZRF Role: Coach / Mentor

 

Biography

Rupesh Popat is a Level 2 coach and is on The FA's COACH Bursary Programme, which aims to get BME coaches to higher levels of the game. As part of this programme, Rupesh was placed at Fulham Football Club and has been coaching there since September 2012. He has completed the FA Youth Award Module 1 and intends to complete Modules 2 and 3 by the end of 2013, before working towards the UEFA B license. Rupesh has been coaching for over six years and has worked with children of different abilities aged between 4 and 17, both boys and girls, during this time. He has coached at a number of community clubs in Leicester and Nottingham and has worked at the Nottinghamshire FA Girls Player Development Centre. He has also spent time coaching children in America and Africa, in order to experience coaching in a different culture.

How did you get into coaching?

Atfter finishing my GCSEs and completing the FA Junior Football Organisers course (now the JFL course) in my final year at secondary school, an opportunity came up to volunteer as a coach for a summer camp that was being run at my school. I really enjoyed my week of coaching at this summer camp and was offered the chance to continue coaching on a more regular basis. Therefore, I started coaching every Saturday morning at my school, where training sessions were being run for children aged 5 to 11. After six months, I decided to do my Level 1 Certificate in Coaching Football. Then, I was informed about a new leadership and volunteering programme (now the FA Football Futures programme), aimed at 16 to 19 year olds, which was being run by The FA and applied to the programme. This gave me the chance to meet like-minded young people, who were also passionate about coaching, and to develop my skills and knowledge through the workshops that were run by this programme.

What does a typical week involve?

A typical week involves planning and delivering PE lessons to the Year 7 and Reception pupils at the school where I work and spending three days a week at Fulham Football Club, where I work with the Academy's U11s age group at training sessions and on match days.

What advice would you give to an aspiring coach looking to get into the professional game?

Take time to learn your craft as a coach and look for opportunities that will help you develop as a coach, as well as provide you with a pathway into the professional game. Surround yourself with experienced coaches, who are prepared to support and mentor you as a coach, and with positive, like-minded coaches, who will encourage you to aspire to work towards being a coach in the professional game.