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CUA’s Skill Acquisition Program (SAP) has a two-fold purpose:

  • To deliver the best possible football education for the players.
  • To educate the wider football community in the methodology of coaching in the Skill Acquisition Phase of youth development.


  • Capital Football SAP provides a pathway for identified potential talented football players in which players aged U9-U12 years are selected into the Canberra United Academy Skill Acquisition Program. The structure of the SAP involves the best players in each age group training 1-2 sessions per week for 38 weeks of the year with the potential to play in SAP elite matches and coached games against other State Associations, regions and club teams.


  • Our main aim is to establish a program of football training and education that will help young players improve technically, tactically, physically, mentally, and socially while preparing them for professional and international football.
  • Football skills are vital to a player’s development at all levels, but essentially at the elite level where success is determined by the ability to perform a range of core skills effectively under match conditions.
  • To develop the players individual decision making in a group environment with the outcome of improving on the four core skill’s (Running with the ball, First Touch, 1 V 1 and Striking the Ball). With high repetition of the said action/topic in different environments in a “no fear of failure” environment.
  • The method of delivery allows the player to learn through a layered learning approach, by putting the players in a game environment then a training environment and back into the game environment. This allows the coaches to monitor if learning has taken place.
  • The method of delivery (having a group of coaches) also allows the player to learn the same message through different delivery methods and styles with the rotation of the groups (working with different coaches delivering the same message).
  • As this is additional training to support the club environment, it is in the best interest of the players to be in an learning environment with as many positive footballing influences.

Talented Player Pathway

  • The SAP coaches will have a responsibility to work in the wider football community. They will be coaching assets in their area and will assist in coaching coaches and promoting the program.
  • The program will aid in the development of elite coaches in the Skill Acquisition Phase of youth development. The flow on effect will be the increase of opportunities for players, both boys and girls, to be better prepared technically and tactically to develop through the Talented Player Pathway as well as developing elite coaches who also are working in the community/NPL environment in local ACT clubs.

Benefits of participating in SAP

  • Players will be exposed to a total Football education process and experience, which will benefit each individual Footballer and help prepare them for whatever their Football future may bring.
  • Players will be given the opportunity to improve both technically and tactically while learning the value of a disciplined approach, punctuality and the need to practice effectively and regularly if they aspire to be a professional player in the A-League or W-League.
  • We will help players to develop socially, to be polite, to interact with others and achieve a high level of self-esteem. Players will also learn to appreciate the value of setting high standards and the value of hard work, whilst learning about the benefits of living a healthy Football lifestyle.
  • Players will ascertain the importance of teamwork, team spirit and sportsmanship, as well as providing an enjoyable and fun no fear of failure environment for them to thrive in.

Selection Criteria

The selection process involves:

  • The player’s playing potential and discipline at SAP training
  • Application of the four core skills
  • The player’s tactical understanding
  • The player’s mental strength (commitment to improve)
  • Compatibility on and off the field with players and all CUA staff.
  • Players recommended for this program must be registered Capital Football players (through Play Football)
  • Players selected will abide by the Capital Football’s Code of Conduct
  • Parents to abide by Capital Football Code of Conduct
  • Players/parents understand that this is a supplementary development program designed to provide the players with more football contacts per week.


Should you have any questions or queries, please contact Capital Football’s Coach Development Manager Phil Booth via email or give him a call on (02) 6189 2217

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