The Department of Sports (DoS) has hired one staff member and promoted another to expand and strengthen its East End and West Bay football programmes.
East End’s former temporary Assistant Coach, Mr. Derron Golaub, is now employed full-time as the district’s Head Coach. The CIFA D license holder coaches youth and senior programmes at the Ronald Forbes Playing Field.
Director of Sports, Mr. Kurt Hyde said: “Coach Derron’s recruitment arose from the need of the Department to maintain high-quality football programmes in the North/East districts.
He now has the opportunity to showcase his coaching abilities in developing youth and senior football players in these districts. I believe Coach Derron will be an asset to the Department and the East End and North Side districts,” the Director concluded.
Coach Derron trains North Side and East End Primary Schools’ seven to 11-year-olds in the North East Primary League, and runs community programmes coaching U13, 11-13, U15, and 12-15 teams. He will be setting up a U11 girls’ team in due course.
During hour-long sessions, Coach Derron teaches U11s and U13s fundamentals such as balance, ball control, passing and dribbling while the U15s undergo 90-minutes of physical training and intense workouts. Players are also taught how to read the game, understand their position, and gain insight into defending and attacking roles.
All players are encouraged “to play with heart and fighting spirit” as Coach Derron insists that these attributes are equally relevant off the pitch. He also believes that youth football coaching has mentoring opportunities and teaches life lessons like making smart decisions in the moment and the benefits of teamwork.
Coach Derron trains two senior programmes, namely East End’s Division Two and the district’s Premier League team. During evening sessions players complete high-intensity workouts and game planning.
“My mission for the East End United Club is to take the youth and senior teams through to become among the top teams on the island. I want to open up the players to more exposure locally and internationally, to have them compete in overseas competitions, and work on national team programmes,” he added.
Coach Derron is the winner of several MVP awards and recently helped his team secure the CIFA President Cup in the Eastern Premier League.
Coach Dion Brandon heads up the West Bay football programmes, and is Vice President of the Cayman Islands Football Association. He holds a CONCACAF D licence as well as US Soccer Coaches Association E, D and C licences.
Before joining the DoS, he coached the national U15, U17, and U20 programmes. The former East End Football Coach’s current post involves coordinating Sir John A. Cumber Primary School’s football programme. As well as designing and implementing the programme, he helps deliver several of the West Bay Football Club’s youth programmes.
Coach Dion runs after-school sessions three days a week and coaches games. In promoting greater access, he also plans to help set up a girls’ primary school football programme. Coach Dion provides three to five hours of free training a week, teaching junior players the basics to become proficient in the game’s core technical aspects. Keen to promote the health-giving benefits of football, he wants to encourage a love of the game.
“With more than 14 years of coaching experience, Coach Dion has proven to be one of our most prolific football coaches,” said Mr. Hyde.
It was an obvious choice to select him as the lead on a new initiative DoS is implementing in West Bay. The opportunity arose for us to be inventive in the development of football in this district. After consulting West Bay teams, the need for assistance with their youth programmes was a reoccurring theme. He will create a structured, consistent, and quality youth football package that supports the development of youth football in the district’s clubs,” the Director remarked.
To provide support, the coach also assists Scholars, Future, Elite, and Alliance clubs with their U13, U15, and U17 teams’ programmes.
One of his top priorities is helping boost the number of children in football programmes. He also wants to raise the amount of older teenagers enrolling in North American universities and junior colleges on sports scholarships. Coach Dion has previously set up college showcases, bringing coaches and scouts to Cayman. Those visits led to nine students earning full or partial scholarships for overseas institutions.
The Florida International University graduate, who previously taught K-12 Mathematics, has represented Cayman at every level of the game from captaining the national youth football side to being in the Men’s Senior Team.
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