Meet The Team - Craig Holmes
Craig Holmes, a member of the NL Leisure sports development team, is an assistant development officer with masses of experience in football. As well as working with the football team, Craig created a ‘Healthy Families’ programme. Healthy Families is a free class for adults and children to attend together. Classes are based around healthy eating and physical activity for the whole family.
In his spare time, Craig has been representing his country in futsal and has been improving his knowledge and skillset through this exciting game.
Craig Holmes is our new ‘Meet the Team’ employee.
Craig Holmes is a fierce competitor on the football field with accomplishments in futsal which he first got involved in just over a year ago.
Craig, who has always had a keen interest in football, got involved in Futsal when a tutor at one of his coaching courses asked Craig to come along and trial for the Scotland National Fustal Team. Craig was successfully selected and was also asked to join Perth Side Santos FC.
Futsal is a format of five-a-side football that is played throughout the world. It is played on a pitch approximately the size of a basketball court with a ball that is smaller and heavier than an outdoor football and has a reduced bounce. The gruelling and fast paced sport, forces a player to use their skills allowing each player to touch the ball nearly twelve times or more than playing football. Futsal places considerable demand on technique, movement, tactical awareness and fitness.
Craig “I’ve always been interested in football all my life. I’ve played with football teams ever since I was seven years old and played all my youth days with a boys club called Dunbeth FC which I am still involved with to date as a coach for the 2003 team. I still enjoy playing football with Rossvale juniors. Futsal is a high intensity game that asks a lot of your fitness but it’s really enjoyable and a great game for younger players to get involved in to help with their development of football as well as Futsal”
Craig’s national duty has been a fantastic experience so far. The Scottish national futsal team has only been running for two to three years. Compared to other countries who have been running for over 10 years, the team are quite a bit away from the same level but they are training hard to get there. Craig trains with the national team every three weeks and has already played some games against club sides from Scotland. In addition, he has played some national teams including Gibraltar. Craig has also played in the home nations against Wales, England and Northern Ireland.
Craig “ The national team set up is great to be involved in as I think anyone who plays in sport will agree regardless of the sport you play in, you would jump at the chance to represent your country and I am proud to say I have done so at Futsal.”
Recently, Craig and the Scottish team came back from Georgia after competing in the European Championship qualifying stage. In their group, they competed against Georgia, Switzerland and Israel. Unfortunately, the team lost their three games but they saw it as a great learning curve and have identified areas to work on for their next match. Georgia was a great experience for Craig who played in the stadium pictured below in front of around 2,000 fans.
(Georgia Vs Switzerland)
Craig’s next competition will be competing in the home nation’s which includes Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland. This will be the second year that he has competed and is hoping to climb the ranks from the year before where his team took home 3rd place. Scotland is hosting the competition this year and it will be an exhilarating experience for Craig to play in front of a home crowd.
Craig “ I would encourage anyone who plays football or has an interest in futsal to get involved with the game as it will help improve your game as a footballer and also the enjoyment you get out of it is priceless. It would be great to see younger players having futsal implemented into their clubs as part of their training programmes or even having futsal matches arranged for the winter time when the outside pitches are frozen. Rather than not playing a game for weeks because games are continuously called off, arrange for a few games of futsal. It’s fun and also the skills and confidence the kids would pick up from it would only be good for their development as footballers. You only have to look at the best players in the world such as Messi and Ronaldo, they both have backgrounds in futsal and talk highly of how it helped make them players they are today. So if it works for them then it can work for anyone.”
That’s all for this ‘Meet the Team’ segment, stay tuned for more inspiring stories coming soon!