On Monday 3 August, JFA held an online press conference to announce their plan to establish the “Associate-Pro (A-Pro) Licence Coaching Course” for female coaches. The course will be setup with the aim to develop female coaches that can lead teams at the newly established professional women’s football league: “WE League,” which is scheduled to kick-off in autumn 2021, and to produce female coaches that can thrive at the world stage.
In order to raise the overall level of Japanese football, JFA has promoted programmes to popularise women’s football and to develop leaders of the next generation. The WE League is considered to be the cornerstone to facilitate sustainable growth of women’s football in Japan.
Vice Technical Director ONO Takeshi of the JFA Technical Committee and Chair IMAI Junko of the JFA Women's Committee appeared in the online conference. Vice Technical Director Ono described the launch of WE League as “a massive opportunity we must capitalise in order to increase the size of the Japanese football family.” Currently, majority of the clubs are led by male coaches at the Nadeshiko League, Japan’s top women’s football league. When looking at the Japanese society as a whole, the country is very much behind in terms of gender equality and the Japanese football community is no exception to this trend. The S grade coaching licence, the highest coaching licence in Japan, is obtained by only eight females (1.6% of total). Ahead of the kick-off of the WE League, Vice Technical Director Ono reflected on the current situation, “we must look in to see if there were any issues in the measures taken by JFA” and continued by pointing out that there must be more opportunities given to female coaches to gain experience, “compared to male coaches who are planning to participate in the S-Licence Coaching Courses, female coaches simply lack experience.” .....
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