Q and A On How John Helped His Keeper Train With Rosenborg BK of Norway.
Friend of Keeperstop.com and owner of Modern Goalkeeper Training Systems in New Jersey had the opportunity to bring one of his accomplished high school goalkeepers from St Benedicts Prep to Rosenborg BK of Norway. I thought this would be an interesting article to share with keepers that think they have what it takes to play at a higher level. This is his experience.
Q: How did you get in touch with Rosenborg?
A: I was lucky enough to spend some time playing professionally in Norway with Kolstad Football Kulbb. During my time there I developed a great working relationship with the club and the staff! My Head Coach during my time with Kolstad FK was Tarjei Smagesjo, Tarjei is currently the Norwegian Women’s National Team Coach at the U17 level. After leaving Norway I have always kept in contact with Tarjei and plenty of my other teammates from Kolstad FK.
I was planning on returning to Norway upon graduating from college to pursue a career as a professional goalkeeper, but some other opportunities came into my life and I chose them over returning to play in Norway. During this time Tarjei was helping me with contacting clubs for trials because I was still deciding whether or not to return to play in Norway.
Upon receiving my coaching position at St. Benedict’s Prep and Red Bull NY I wanted to make it a point to help talented American players and support them if they had the dream or desire to go aboard and play professionally. Once I was settled and able to develop some players at St. Benedict’s Prep I knew this type of opportunity would present itself upon identifying the proper candidate.
Keeperstop Comment: If you are interested in playing college soccer or internationally it is best to train with a knowledgeable coach that also is well connected. Training hard; having the skill, intelligence; and athletic ability is a big part of it but it is also who you know.
Q: How would you suggest a US keeper with talent get scouted overseas?
A: The best way to be scouted from overseas clubs is to go travel and arrange to train with the club or a lower level club in the country you desire. Now, this is pretty difficult if you do not know anyone in that country and of course traveling is quite expensive. But if you have the drive to play aboard you have to be willing to go through the struggles to get your foot in the door and earn a chance to prove yourself in training.
Keeperstop.com Comment: John had a special goalkeeper that was technically proficient, athletic, intelligent, good work ethic, and a presence. It is exceptionally hard to get such an opportunity. Very few US players appreciate how hard it is to play professionally or receive a soccer scholarship. It is very important to make sure an athlete excels in the class room and if possible attend college in the US to have opportunities after sports.
Q: What were the steps taken with Rosenborg that resulted in a training/trial?
A: In this situation I spoke to Tarjei and mentioned that I had a talented player on my hands and i would love for him to get a chance to train with Rosenborg BK. I asked if he could help arrange something and talk to his contacts in the Trondheim area.
Q: What was the training like at Rosenborg?
A: The Goalkeeper training at Rosenborg was totally focused on match preparation. Jorn Jamtfall is Rosenborg’s Goalkeeper Coach and the Goalkeeper Coach for the Norwegian National Team, we had a chance to observe him work with his first team goalkeepers in training and we also had two private sessions with him at Lerkendal (Rosenborg’s Training Center).
A training session that we watched was on Positioning and Handling. Everything involved moving to get in line with the ball, then setting your feet to attack the ball once it was struck to goal. The focus on training was to get your proper angle to the ball and prepare your body for the on coming shot. It was vital that the goalkeepers attack the ball on a 30 degree angle to cut down the space in the goal.