Curriculum Foundation Phase


Youth Development Phase

Through our Youth Development Phase (YDP) we are now able to identify and encounter our players’ abilities and focus on their own position specifics and team formations.

We encourage the players to display attributes and qualities that suggest they are ready and able to guarantee a defensive or attacking role on the field of play.

Players will still play on the left, right, and middle areas though now in a more specific part of the pitch with a more tactical aspect increasing a soccer game understanding, and a real competitive edge.

Curriculum Senior Phase


Senior Phase

Our NPSL, UPSL, and UWS senior teams are the primary target and end goal for any of our youth players to reach for and embrace throughout our FC Arizona Soccer Player Pathway.

We believe in our coaching style methodology and personal development soccer pathway and system to nurture the progress of our players not just to become formidable athletes though also fantastic and humble human beings.

If our players are successful in reaching our senior professional phase they will have done so with immense development and success. Our homegrown soccer products will now be fully respondent and game intelligent to enable the transition and strategies of individual and team tactics. They will have a determined and winning mentality and the perfect platform to showcase their talent.

Curriculum Foundation Phase


Foundation Phase

During our foundation phase we are focused on the deliverance of technical excellence and by achieving this outcome through the game itself.

By embracing small sided games and allowing 1v1 duals we are encouraging our players to create scenarios and outcomes that will enhance decision making founded on their technical skill set and see our players grow and flourish with confidence consistently.

Curriculum Pre Development Phase


Pre-Development Phase

When working with children in these age groups, it is not only inspiring it is also rewarding and requires a special approach and a certain quality which we call “Patience.”

Our coaches take pride and huge responsibility in our Pre-Development Phase as this is the stage that the players will have someone formally teaching them the game of soccer and allowing the children to develop and flourish whilst understanding the basic fundamentals of the game.

Curriculum Community Phase


Recreational/ Community Phase

Our FC Arizona recreational soccer programs and all of its divisions (i.e., Grassroots, Recreational, Camps, Futsal Pickup, and School Programs) are an introduction to the beautiful game of soccer and are structured and maximized to aid the growth and development of the children within the sport.

We provide a fun and enthusiastic REC soccer experience for players of all ages and skill levels in a safe and enjoyable environment.

Curriculum Progression Structure


Progression Structure Overview

We always prioritize what is best for the player, keeping them at the center of our development model. To help support Long Term Player Development, we have a five-phase progression structure starting with the Community Phase and leading to our Professional Phase.

The Perfect Pyramid

Curriculum Gamefit



What is Gamefit Soccer?

<span style=”font-weight: 400;”>Game Fit Soccer is a multifaceted program that aims to create healthy, happy, functional  athletes through the highest level of age appropriate training on the field, while focusing on  developing and improving daily and weekly habits off the field. </span>

<span style=”font-weight: 400;”>Layering in simple, sustainable daily and weekly habits and incorporating healthy  lifestyle changes is the key to long term success and enjoyment in youth sports. Turns out that is  the same formula for developing healthy adults as well. I realize there is a lot more to it, but  that is a good start.  </span>

<span style=”font-weight: 400;”>Every player in the club receives individualized training and instruction on a weekly basis  with the primary focus being to improve the quality of movement. Focussing on the quality of  movement, as opposed to focussing on force production, lowers the risk of injury while safely  improving the overall ability as an athlete and soccer player.  </span>

<span style=”font-weight: 400;”>All FC Arizona members will receive performance tips via email that are money in the  bank every 1st and 15th of the month. These will focus on giving actionable advise and  information for creating habits to improve athletic performance. Topics focus on Mindset,  Breathing Exercises, Nutrition, Movement and Recovery. </span>

Field Sessions

The in-person sessions will be higher intensity sessions with field training sessions working on high intensity movement skills with fundamental progressions proven to teach players correct technique with a strong foundation of fundamental movement patterns.  Once proper technique can be maintained with minimal error – plyometrics will be introduced to field sessions to begin resistance training.  Movement skill training will always end with 95% or greater efforts progressing from closed-skills (no decisions made) to open-skills (player has to make a decision).  Putting players in realistic playing situations (specificity principle) while under stress (95% physical effort or greater) will maximize the transfer of movement skills to their sport performance.  This is also why we want to have a greater presence of soccer performance because activity specificity and consistency of specific situations and movement patterns are used in those similar situations where the player can also make decisions and have positive or negative responses to those decisions.  So, when they have a positive response to a decision they made because they accomplished the goal of the exercise by making that decision, they will more likely make that decision when put in a game situation (i.e., transfer to sport).


<span lang=”EN”>MHP will be an integral part of each player’s individual performance program.  The difference between a good soccer player and a great soccer player is what they do with the 22 hours of the day they are not playing the game, including additional performance training catered to their needs.  MHP helps each player navigate the time they are off the field to maximize their efforts and optimize their individual player development to accomplish their goals.  Some of these features include: mindset, goal-setting, recovery, sleep, nutrition, hydration, academic schedule, self-reflection, mindfulness, etc.  MHP uses a specific screening protocol to measure the physiological, psychological, and social competencies of each player to build an individual player profile (IDP) to use as a tangible baseline measurement track progression (or) regression of each player.  Based on the progression or regression of each player, the coaching staff can make adjustments as needed to facilitate optimal development of each player.  This information is also valuable for being identified as it will include performance testing.  For example, if a player has a 35-inch vertical jump or runs the 40 in under 4.6 seconds that will jump off the page for any coach that is recruiting your child. </span>

Curriculum Overview




  • The FC Arizona values guide our actions and underpin all our coaching activity.
  • Prominent FC Arizona players should be used as role models to help inspire players and demonstrate aspects of the game you are working on.
  • The FC Arizona Program is split in to 4 phases:
    • Pre-Development Phase (up to U8)
    • Foundation Phase (U9 to U11)
    • Youth Development Phase (U12 to U18)
    • Senior Phase
  • In each phase we consider the FC Arizona development model, focusing on 5 key areas (technical, tactical, physical, mental, and social) and keeping the player at the center at all times.
  • We have example structures and coach considerations for sessions within each of the phases.
  • Examples of each section of the session structures can be found in specific phase libraries on Sports Session Planner (SSP).
  • Within the pre-academy phase we do not set a specific cycle and this can be tailored to the needs of your players and program type (5 weeks, 10 weeks, etc.).
  • Within the foundation and youth development phase we work to a set 5-week program cycle.
  • We provide guidance on position specificity which is relevant for each phase.
  • For those working in an 11v11 environment, more detail is provided on patterns and systems of play.


The purpose of this program is to guide and provide you with an understanding of the FC Arizona Curriculum.

All coaches at FC Arizona are expected to fully understand this curriculum and deliver a program of coaching that follows the principles and details outlined.

This curriculum is our guide for planning and delivering a year-round FC Arizona coaching program.

All our coaching programs are based upon our current coaching curriculum that is delivered to our players at FC Arizona.

Our FC Arizona Program aims to provide the best coaching program and experience for all our players and stakeholders allowing them to develop and reach their full potential.


To develop and progress our Soccer Club and our players through our coaching program and curriculum to all our participants.


TOGETHER  |  There is no “I” in team

EVOLVE  |  Play for the name on the front of the shirt and they will remember the name on the back.

AMBITION  |  We will aspire and dare to reach our dreams.

MOTIVATION  |  Don’t stop when you are tired, stop when you are done.


  • Respect the FC Arizona values in everything we do
    • Together
    • Evolve
    • Ambition
    • Motivation
  • Attacking the football that is played with individual expression, linked to excellent decision making
  • Dominating your opponent in 1v1 situations
  • Outplaying your opponent in a variety of different ways
  • Dominating possession of the ball aided by clever movement
  • Scoring goals via individual excellence or combing with teammates
  • A commitment to be positive at all times
  • A dedication for improvement
  • An outstanding work ethic
  • Individual application
  • Collective organization
  • Winning mentally
  • Taking ownership of learning self-improvement
  • Excellent communication


We strive to control the speed of the game by owning the ball and owning the pitch. The game is played with one ball, our ball.

We play with high energy levels, positive personality and individual expression. We demonstrate aggression in both attacking and defensive play.

When out of possession we look for opportunities to press high and aggressively – looking to win the ball back as quick as possible.


In every single session there is a minimum requirement at the FC Arizona Academy. We call this the non-negotiables

  • 100% effort and application
  • Respect decisions of staff and officials
  • Being courageous in and out of possession, being brave to get on the ball
  • Positive body language
  • The FC Arizona values (together, evolve, ambition, motivation) must be promoted at all times


We must develop all players at the FC Arizona International Academy in 5 key areas: Technical, Tactical, Physical, Social, and Mental.

  • Core techniques/skills include receiving skills (to control, to create space, to turn and to protect), moving skills (dribbling and RWTB) and releasing skills (passing, shooting, ball striking)
  • Sessions that allow the players opportunity to practice core techniques/ skills to develop their “hard drive”
  • High repetition of these core techniques/ skills is key to improvement
  • Opposed and unopposed practices

  • Attacking principles or play
  • Defending principles of play
  • In transition – counter attack and counter defend
  • Sessions that allow specific decision­ making opportunities and the ability to adapt and combat different pressures and systems of play with and without the ball
  • Players should gain an understanding of the five W’s (Who, What, Where, When and Why)

  • Agility, balance, stability, co-ordination, reactions, strength, endurance, power and speed should all be considered in your planning
  • Sessions in which players carry out fundamental movements as well as more game related movements

  • Challenged appropriately
  • Sessions to encourage players to interact with each other, problem solve, compete and work as a team
  • Supported where necessary- visually, orally or practically

  • Preparation, brave with and without the ball, accepting pressure, freedom of expression and positive body language
  • Does your session promote a winning mentality?
  • Include competition within your session


  • Long term player development (LTPD) and players enjoying their soccer, are at the core of our playing and coaching philosophy.
  • We feel an attacking style of play based on effective possession of the ball is the best style to improve learning and development.
  • To develop creative players with comfortable midfield attributes, freedom of expression is vital in an environment that promotes individual decision making.
  • Players need to be encouraged to express themselves without the fear of failure. Young players should never be discouraged from trying new things or criticized if they make a mistake. Coaches should always praise effort and application
  • We always prioritize what is best for the player, keeping them at the center of our development model.
  • To help support LTPD we have a four-phase progression structure.
    • Pre-Development Phase (up to U8)
    • Foundation Phase (U9-U11)
    • Youth Development Phase (U12-U18)
    • Senior Phase