Yesterday at Lochinch, the Queen’s Park Academy keepers had their first group coaching session with first team goalkeeping coach, Glen Johnson.
Glen commented about the session: “I see my role at Queen’s Park, first and foremost, is looking after the three senior goalkeepers. However, my job remit is also to add value to all aspects of goalkeeping throughout the football club and that includes the first team, women’s and academy keepers. Anything to do with goalkeeping, I’ll be involved.
“Queen’s Park are looking to provide the best football experience for all at the club, from first team through to community participants. And that means, for me, getting involved at all levels. And that suits me as I would like to think I’m a pro-active person. It’s important for me to actively organise these types of events and get them up and running and also take part in them.”
Craig Gordon, head of Academy goalkeeping said: “‘We are working closely with Glen to grow the programme on the goalkeeping side to help make that transition from academy to senior football a bit smoother.
“The boys will get a lot out of working with Glen. Today he was working on handling and shape techniques. If we can establish these techniques early, especially for the younger keepers, that will help them massively.”
Glen has already worked closely with the Under 16 and Under 18 keepers and you already can see the benefits of him coaching the boys and their reaction to working with the senior goalie coach.”
Glen continued: “I was really pleased with today’s event. I’m starting to work closely with Craig, who as you know is head of academy goalkeeping. He wants to learn and develop as a coach so that his keepers get the best possible coaching.
“Also to have Jacques and Calum giving up their time to take part in the session added a lot to the day. Jacques has been through the Queen’s Park Academy programme and is now an apprentice at the club and obviously Calum is a senior pro. These keepers fitted this session between training in the morning and a gym session this afternoon. So I want to thank them for giving up their time to do so.
“I remember what it was like being a young goalie, going through the ranks at Canvey Island and Southend. You look up to the senior goalkeepers because one day you want to be them. So to have that interaction with them is great for the boys. We are all part of the Queen’s Park Goalies Union here. “
Craig added: “Today was the first of what we hope will be a regular feature in our keepers’ development plan. This week’s school holidays allow us to get the boys to Lochinch and work with Glen during the day rather than at our usual night time sessions.
“I think our keepers, especially the younger ones, will take a lot from this session. Firstly get coached by a very experienced senior coach in Glen, but also working alongside first team keepers like Jacques and Calum and seeing the qualities needed to make that step up to first team football will be tremendous for them.”
Finally Glen commented: “Today was the first time we had brough all the academy keepers together. We will evaluate and develop the programme as the season progresses.
“I also plan to get out into the community programme as well. I think there is talent everywhere and it’s my job to go and find that talent as well and offer people opportunities.
“I’ve got lots of plans, goalkeeping wise and although it takes a bit of time to implement the programmes, especially during Covid, I’m really looking forward to driving the goalkeeping department at the football club on.”