“I managed to do what other people didn’t think I was capable of. It wasn’t expected that I could make it to this level. My impression was that people around me thought I would just play football for a while. And here I am, a professional coach, and I am training other women to become coach. That’s what I have achieved.” (Joséphine Mimozette Ndoumou Mike, Yaoundé, Cameroon)

Female Football Coaches and football coaching are the main subjects of this manual. We believe that it is important to focus on female coaches when talking about equal access and participation in football. Coaches influence the development of girls in sports and in life. Some girls and women feel safer when they are trained by women, and parents in many parts of the world often prefer when their daughters are instructed by female coaches.

At the same time, female coaches are important role models for girls and can motivate them to become coaches themselves. Leadership positions as coaches are tied to social prestige and acknowledgement and female coaches contribute to challenging gender roles and making women in sports more visible.

Focusing on female coaches is fighting for an equal share in football. Girls and women not only want to play football, they want to teach, educate, decide and govern football as well.

Only 7% of all registered football coaches are women. Meaning, in many organizations, female coaches may be working alone or within a leadership body otherwise comprised of males.  So it is of great importance that we support each other: by sharing information and experiences and by building strong networks, so that we are not fighting alone and can be stronger together.

In December 2015, twenty female coaches from 16 countries put their heads together in Berlin: professional coaches and grassroots coaches, experienced coaches and beginner coaches. This book is the result of one intensive week of discussion, exchange and practice.

“In Senegal, we have a saying: He who doesn't travel, doesn't know where it is good. I know that I am in Berlin for this conference, but at the same time I am in Kenya, in South Africa, in Oman, all the other participants’ countries. We are learning from each other’s experiences and sharing.” (Seyni Ndir Seck)

DISCOVER FOOTBALL uses football to promote gender equality, fight discrimination and challenge stereotypes.

We have been able to observe the power of football in our various projects and among our partners from all over the world. In most parts of the world football is still a male sport. Girls and women face discrimination due to their gender and/or sexual orientation, and have to deal with social prejudice and exclusion. A lot of courageous women are fighting for their right to play and claim their place on the pitch, and in doing so, paving the way for other girls and women to play in a football environment without discrimination. They challenge gender roles and claim spaces in sports as well as in society, thereby gaining self-confidence, leadership skills and social and political agency.

DISCOVER FOOTBALL brings together these women, connects them, facilitates exchange and builds strong alliances.

DISCOVER FOOTBALL strives to create better conditions and higher visibility of women´s football and to strengthen committed players, coaches and outstanding activists.

This manual is a collection of experiences and ideas from female football coaches active in  programs and teams around the world. Within these pages, you will find examples, stories and advice which we hope will help you overcome challenges and identify opportunities in your own community. Above all, we hope this manual will tell you that you are not alone, and inspire you to get involved and take action.

You can read this manual chapter by chapter, or simply flip through. You will find background information on coaches and coaching as well as ideas on how to deal with common challenges like coaching very heterogeneous teams, the lack of money for a team, not having enough players or dealing with conflicts in your team.

You can read stories of coaches from various countries, dig into the drills section, and  engage with certain material to reflect on your own coaching style.

Let’s claim the pitch together!

You can download the manual here:

Female Coaching Zone - A DISCOVER FOOTBALL Manual

A printed version can be ordered in our Shop.