Meet the Coaches: Sebastian Cortes

Sebastian is a long time player at the club and took the step into coaching in 2020 with the Women’s VPL Reserves squad.

Can you introduce yourself please:

Sure! I am Sebastian, currently 29 years old from Colombia. I am a Software Development Engineer with a great passion for Football. I came to Australia in 2014 and a year after I joined MUSC as a player until 2019, then in 2020 I decided to move on into coaching at the club as well.

Why did you choose to coach for the Melbourne University Soccer Club?

After having spent 4 seasons as a player for this club, I have developed a strong sense of appreciation for the club, the people who make it possible for it to exist and the community it represents. I felt that if I wanted to move into coaching, I would like to do it at this club as a way to keep contributing towards its success. I am very glad I was given the opportunity.

What do you feel are the main benefits of coaching for MUSC?

The main benefit is the opportunity to join a community of great people. Honestly, during all these years I have just collected a bunch of great memories surrounded by respectful and friendly people, that is crucial. Then, of course, I would also mention that the club makes significant efforts to provide either coaches and players with the best possible resources to enjoy training sessions and games as well as to develop ourselves to become better.

Has there been a favourite season at MUSC, if so why?

The season I played in 2017 and 2019 both were just amazing. During both seasons we had a solid and cohesive team. Each game we had that feeling that we could beat every team even under those situations where we were behind. I have memories in some of the most difficult games of the season where I would just stop and look around during a game and think “Wow. How cool is to have the chance to be part of this team and play such hard competitive games”. It was very enjoyable.

Has there been a standout player you have coached at MUSC?

Being 2020 my first season coaching, I couldn’t have the opportunity to see players performing throughout the season to find an outstanding player. However, I would say the whole group was outstanding in its determination to commit and give their best during each training session, even though the forecast of the season getting started was not so optimistic.

Who is your coaching idol?

I think 100% Jurgen Klopp. I just enjoy every aspect of his coaching style and the way his teams play. Another coach I used to like very much because of the way his teams played is Jupp Heynckes.

How would you describe your coaching style?

I honestly wouldn’t know well yet. I am fairly new to coaching and there are many things I still want to learn before I can decide what I want my coaching style to be. What I would say for now is that I am the kind of coach who tries to be approachable and creates a connection of trust with players. If players trust me, I think this is the best way I can then provide them with the most information to make of them better at the game.

Do you have a particularly memorable moment relating to your coaching experience?

It was during my first coaching session carried out without the supervision of the head coach. Honestly, I was very nervous because so far I have always had his support to guide me through the session planning, execution and so on. By myself, I was just praying for the players to understand what I was trying to achieve and enjoy the session. I felt like that was a little test to show the players if I had the skills to coach them or not. In the end, once the session was over, I think it went very well and it felt like a victory!

How do you prepare for a match on gameday? Do you have any quirky pre-match rituals?

I just have a schedule that I want to follow as exactly as possible. 1 hour before the game I want the players to start getting changed, 50 minutes before I will approach them to remind the tactical instructions, 40 minutes before we would start warming up and stretching, then 5 minutes before the game I would approach them one last time just to spur them to go to play the game with intensity and confidence.

Besides soccer, do you have any other hobbies or passions?

I am very passionate about entrepreneurship. Besides my job as an engineer I started my startup that sadly only survived for 3 years but now once again I am trying my luck with another idea that I am just getting started. Hopefully, this is the one!

Great stuff! We look forward to having you coach for a long time.

Are you interested in joining our coaching team? Find out how to become a coach at MUSC:

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