New Zealand Football is at crossroads. International success and a revitalised administrative foundation have provided the sport with the chance to capitalise on growth at all levels. But one thing has held us back.
Until now, there has been no definable pathway guiding players to a level of football that will help them to fulfil their potential and retain them in the game.
Regional differences merely highlight the lack of consistent opportunities for players to reach their potential. Faced with this patchwork inheritance, New Zealand Football has developed its first ever National Player Development Framework for player development.
The National Player Development Framework recognises that a ‘whole of football’ approach is needed, taking into account all factors that contribute to the players’ football experience. For this reason, the Framework aims to create congruence between players’ development needs and all the parties responsible for the delivery of football.
By working within this framework, federations, clubs, schools and private providers will share resources, benchmark against best practice and work together to achieve excellence across the board
Scientific evidence demonstrates that around three hours of daily practice in both formal training environments and informal play for 8 to 12 years are what it takes to become an outstanding adult footballer. This indicates the importance of long-term planning to reach football excellence.
A logical, progressive development pathway for players is also linked to higher rates of lifelong participation at all levels. Working within the National Framework will provide New Zealand with a development path based on Long Term Player Development principles that utilise the natural stages of physical, mental, and emotional growth of players.
In this sense, the competition structure, development philosophy, and training programme are specifically designed to meet the New Zealand players’ needs, and aim to address some of the gaps that exist at all levels in New Zealand Football.
To find out more about the National Player Framework Development open a copy below or contact your local Football Development Officer.