As the season ends and the summer begins, as an academy, we brace ourselves for the inevitable loss of players. We recently had a case when one of our U-14 players, who had been with us since age 8, was poached by a rival academy by promising some international academy. The first step is for us to see what we can do. How can the coach help? What steps can the academy take so that the talent we develop does not shift to another academy?
The truth is that once we know that a kid has decided to go and try something else, we have to let them know. In a place like Dubai, there are so many options that it's not surprising for players to constantly evaluate their decisions. My only advice is to find out what is best for your kid. For me, if, after a few years in one academy if I want to shift, then what am I going to leave behind and what will I gain?
TFA is known for creating pathways that work for each individual player, professional or educational. We also take time to understand the aspirations of the players, and based on their potential, we work closely with them. I can't deny that it does pinch to see the fruit of our labor bloom at a rival team, and as a teacher, I sincerely hope that each player receives the best attention.