Lachlan Finch has been involved in football on the Northern Beaches for his whole life, starting with the Killarney Heights Leprechauns at the age of 4, and then spending his teenage years with Forest Killarney FC which led to playing Premier League for the club before retirement at the age of 27, after which he immediately undertook his first foray into coaching.
“I was asked to coach the first grade squad that I had just left, and in hindsight it was quite naïve for both the club and myself to appoint a coach with absolutely no coaching experience. It would be fair to say that it didn’t end well, however I got called back to play 3rd grade and coach a lower AL division team for 3 seasons, so it can’t have been all bad!”
In his second spell as a coach, he gained some real insights into the role and the impact a coach has beyond training and games.
“When I look back now, I realise how little I knew about not just technical coaching, but the science of how to coach effectively. I did however form great bonds with the young men I was coaching and recognised I could have a positive impact on their lives both on and off the football pitch.”
Lachlan was persuaded back into playing a few seasons for a Dee Why AL squad until he tore his ACL at the age of 40, which finally cemented his retirement from football all together, until his sons started playing for CC Strikers where he felt he could add value as a coach.
“In my life I have never actually sought to become a coach, but I’m a strong believer in giving back to the football community which has given me so much. I have lifelong friends, mentors and experiences thanks to so many people who have given their time to help me succeed, so it’s only fair that I do the same.”
Lachlan is driven to be the best coach he can for his team, but in his first season with the U12s, he felt like he didn’t really know what he was doing. He knew his coaching methods were antiquated at best, so he decided to attend some coaching workshops offered by MWFA build a relevant skillset.
“These courses were nothing short of revolutionary in terms of my thinking. I was amazed at how relevant and practical they were, and I just kept thinking every coach should be doing them!”
Now into his 3rd year as coach of his son’s team, he really wanted to lift his coaching abilities and jumped at the opportunity to join the Future Coaches Program.
“To be honest, it wasn’t what I was expecting. It could almost be described as an SAS course on the methodology, science and practicality of football coaching. Eugene sets and maintains a very high standard for all of the participants which delivers a very intensive course. I feel I have gained a comprehensive knowledge of coaching techniques to improve my coaching style, and an alumni of like minded coaches to share ideas with and rely upon well into the future.”
Finchy, as everyone knows him, is also an ambassador for Man Anchor (a men’s mental health initiative on the Northern Beaches), so hopes to combine his passion to inspire and have a positive influence on young boys lives with his newly acquired coaching ability.
MWFA is looking forward to seeing Lachlan continue to create not just good footballers, but amazing young men.
Look out for more articles on other MWFA Future Coaches over the coming months.