Player Development

We will focus on excellence in the development of our young footballers. We will let winning come as a result of development, not in place of it.

Our Player Development Philosophy

An obsession with winning is the enemy of excellence in junior sport. Teaching our young players to be creative, to try and pass out from the back and beat players 1v1 may cost us goals and games, but it will help make our players better for when it really matters – later in life.

Excellence is all about the process, while winning is all about the outcome. A focus on excellence promotes a growth mindset that is crucial to learning, improving and, ultimately, better performance. A focus on winning promotes the destructive, outcome oriented, fixed mindset that fears failure and inhibits development.

Excellence allows room for failure and learning, while an obsession with winning does not.

There are many people, particularly in sport, who think that success and excellence are the same thing. They are not the same thing. Excellence is something that is lasting and dependable and largely within a person’s control. In contrast, success is perishable and is usually outside our control. Striving for excellence will typically lead to success anyway.

We are competitive. We love winning. We believe that every time a player takes the field, he or she should give maximum effort in the pursuit of victory.

But players who play to win is one thing, and has nothing to do with coaches who only coach to win. Such an approach will rob kids of their sporting education and will set them up for failure later in life. Junior coaches who only coach to win love to say, “I am developing winners.” Sorry, but no. They are not. They are developing losers because they are not giving their players the tools to compete and win later at the higher levels of their sport.

Therefore… We choose to focus on excellence in the development of our young footballers.

Printable copy here.


Matamata Swifts – Parent’s Code of Conduct

How well your child plays football is not a reflection of you. How your child behaves while playing football is a reflection of you.

1. Encourage your child to always play fair and play by the rules.
2. Teach your child that hard work and a positive attitude will give them the best chance of winning.
3. Help your child turn defeat into victory by working on skill improvement and good sportsmanship.
4. Keep your sideline comments positive.

5. If you require clarification about team selection, or any other important matter related to junior football, you must contact the club’s management committee, in writing, by sending your query to:
6. Respect the referee – do not question the referee’s judgement. The referee is always right.
7. Recognise the value and importance of your club’s coaches. They are through shouting conflicting instructions during games.
8. There are plenty of ways for you to step up and help the club – perhaps as an assistant coach or team manager. Your positive support is always welcome.

Most of all, please help your child to enjoy their time learning to play football for Matamata Swifts.

Printable copy here.


Matamata Swifts – Footballer’s Code of Conduct

When you play football for Matamata Swifts, you represent your community. Please:

1. Play hard but play by the rules.
2. Win with humility; lose with dignity.
3. Never argue with the referee’s decisions. It is your coach’s job to ask any questions.
4. Be positive towards your team-mates. Treat everyone as you would like to be treated.
5. Show up for training and games on time, in the correct gear and with a positive attitude.
6. Keep your sideline comments positive.
7. Be a good sportsperson. Hard work and a positive attitude will give you the best chance of winning games.
8. Respect your coach, cooperate with your team mates and have regard for your opponents. Without them you don’t have a game.

Printable copy here.


Dwayne Barlow 021 993 832

Our Partners

Want to join the Swifts?

We run teams for adults and kids, males and females, that compete at a range of different levels.