From Pitches in Asia – Report from JFA Coaches/Instructors Vol. 70: EGUCHI Naomi, Fitness Coach of Thailand Women's National Team & U-20 Women's National Team
14 October 2022
A year has passed since I started working as a fitness coach for the Thailand Women's National Team and U-20 Thailand Women's National Team in July 2021, and the year has gone by very quickly. Head Coach OKAMOTO Miyo and GK Coach TODOROKI Natsuko started in March of the same year, so they have already been in Thailand fora year and a half now, and we have spent most of our time with the players and staff of the national team. I contributed to this column “From Pitches in Asia” a few months after my dispatch, but there were still many things I could not see at the time, and I have gained many valuable experiences since then.
Experiencing competitions in Southeast Asia
Over the past year, we have participated in a number of competitions held in Southeast Asia, including the AFC Women's Asian Cup India 2022™, the AFF Women's Championship 2022, and the SEA Games (biennial multi-sport event involving Southeast Asian countries). At each of the competitions, we experienced at first-hand how the competition organiser and the cultural background of the host country can have a significant impact on everything from the competition operation to the results. Thailand managed to reach the final in several competitions, but unfortunately failed to win any titles. However, all of these competitions provided invaluable experience for the players, including the SEA Games held in Vietnam, where the team played against the host Vietnam in front of an away crowd of 17,000 at the final, and the AFF Women's Championship, where the team reached the final with a young squad.
Embracing the differences in customs and culture
When you go abroad, the first challenge you will encounter is the differences in customs and culture. Thailand is no exception, and the ’Thais’ characteristic and distinct style can be seen in their lifestyle, way of thinking, approach to football, work, and much more. The language barrier is still an obstacle, but I think we are gradually getting better at communicating with each other and accepting each other's differences. We have a number of challenges ahead of us, but for the time being, we will do everything we can to prepare for the intercontinental play-offs in February next year to qualify for the FIFA Women's World Cup Australia/ New Zealand 2023™.
- 2022/09/30 From Pitches in Asia – Report from JFA Coaches/Instructors Vol. 69: OKU Takeshi, Chengdu Football Association Academy U-12 Technical Director
- 2022/09/09 From Pitches in Asia – Report from JFA Coaches/Instructors Vol. 68: OTSUKA Ichiro, Head Coach of the Mongolia National Team & U-23 National Team
- 2022/08/26 From Pitches in Asia – Report from JFA Coaches/Instructors Vol. 67: HONDA Midori, Head Coach of Uzbekistan Women's National Team
- 2022/07/29 From Pitches in Asia – Report from JFA Coaches/Instructors Vol. 66: HAGINO Shuntaro, Physiotherapist of U-18 & U-15 Brunei Darussalam National Team
- 2022/06/28 From Pitches in Asia – Report from JFA Coaches/Instructors Vol. 65: OKAMOTO Miyo, Head Coach of Thailand Women's National Team & U-20 Women's National Team
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