Monday 21 December 2020
Sydney, Australia

In December 2020, 30 globally located teams of coaches and players from grassroots to professional participated in Round 1 of the Inaugural FCA XV Mind Games Cup.

This global first in Football provided teams the opportunity to remotely step into a football-themed virtual world, compete against each other, whilst developing and honing essential skills such as communication, collaboration, leadership, resilience, trust and teamwork.

To be successful teams had to prepare themselves prior to the session and keep their emotions in check, with the key being able to deal with uncertainty under pressure. Teams who were able to adapt quickly, performed well.

Congratulations to all teams who participated. The top six teams from Round 1 will now progress through to the Final, to be scheduled for early 2021. Teams in the final are:

  • Mixed Bag (representing several community clubs) (QLD)
  • Maverick FC (representing Sydney FC Sporting Schools) (NSW)
  • Manly United FC (NSW)
  • Curl Curl FC (NSW)
  • Riversdale Maestros (VIC)
  • Taylor’s Lakes Soccer Academy (VIC)

Krishneel Maharaj, Mixed Bag team member, AFC/FFA Advance Licence Coach, Psychologist and FCA member stated:

“I’m a big fan of any quality program that highlights the importance of the oft-forgotten and important ‘soft skills’ of coaching like communication and leadership.

Our team has had fun and a few laughs working together through the Mind Game challenges. It gave us an opportunity to practice our communication, team work and decision-making skills in a challenging and unfamiliar context. We look forward to participating in the final in February 2021″

All participants also received an exclusive presentation delivered by Prof. Mike Conway, who is the Founder of XVenture and the emotional agility and mind coach for the Socceroos. In his tutorial, Mike introduced participants to the EARL Measure (emotional agility, resilience and leadership), a tool he uses in creating performance improvement programs for individuals and teams including the Socceroos, Sydney FC, the Joeys, Olympians and many business organisations globally.

The FCA XV Mind Games Cup is the first initiative under the new partnership between Football Coaches Australia and XVenture. Under this partnership, coaches will be able to explore, read, watch and experience five subject matter areas, including leadership, emotional agility/ intelligence, culture, communication and resilience. Everything in this exciting program is football-themed and includes real cases and examples of essential skills in practice.

The FCA XVenture Essential Skills Program, available from early 2021, is highly relevant and suitable for all levels of coaches, from community to elite football.…but you can already start your self-improvement journey and learn about the EARL Measure and approach by completing the EARL Measure here ( completely free of charge. You’ll receive your results and interpretations upon completion.

Do you want to be the first to know the Essential Skills Program is available?

Send an email to: and simply put into the Subject Line: Tell me more about the Essential Skills Program and include your full name in the email.