Football Association programs to help players make career in big leagues
Aivar Pohlak, the president of the Estonian Football Association, is planning to elevate the football level in Estonia with two projects.
The aim, as stated by Pohlak, is to have two to three national team players playing in Europe's top leagues, with seven or eight in the continent's middle-strength leagues and an end to the situation where a few national team footballers are without a club, Eesti Päevaleht reported.
The first program is called “the other side of the ball,” and focuses on mental strengths of players. It also calls for top-league teams in Estonia to hire a scout who could plan a talented footballer's next steps with the association organizing training on the subject.
The other project is named “99 footballers,” which will map the three best youth players for each of the 11 positions on the pitch in three age groups, and will help clubs communicate with the players and help realize their ambitions.
“Educating a player will help them see their career from a wider perspective and avoid greedy and incompetent agents,” Pohlak said.
A number of current national team players are without a club, including goalkeeper Sergei Pareiko, defender Enar Jääger, midfielder Joel Lindpere and former Spartak Moscow and Middlesbrough player Tarmo Kink.
Only Ragnar Klavan, who plays in Germany, can be considered to be playing in one of Europe's top leagues.