It feels a little asinine to begin to describe how Covid-19 has impacted the football world - when it's impacted the entire world and taken so much from us.
It's fair to say though, that within our industry, it has still massively affected our lives, our jobs, our passions. It has affected supporting families and in too many cases - our mental health.
I didn't intend the first blog post to start off in a negative fashion, but from here on out I will look to put a positive spin on proceedings. I promise! So 'going forward' (a phrase I detest but will use nevertheless) what lies ahead in the world of football scouting.
My mentality when it comes to scouting work..... If you're not working, you should be working.
By this I mean, if you're not out in the field producing work for clubs/agencies/organisations etc, that doesn't mean you cannot improve and strengthen your current position.
How are you getting yourself out there? How are you improving? How are you standing out from the rest?
- Courses. There are some excellent scouting courses out there, many of which are online, which is not only a way to gather different perspectives and ideas, but will see you connecting with others, building up contact lists and opening up avenues to future work opportunities.
- TV. Watch and write reports from TV. I know that breaks so many codes of scouting, but even if it's two small paragraphs on each player, each time you watch a game. Soon enough you have a little database of information that may be useful to you somewhere down the line.
- Read. Read and Read! So many fascinating books and articles out there which are designed to give you insight to areas usually unknown. The methodology and mindset of those successful in the field. And don't just read books about football scouting, try other sports too.
- Build a database. If you're able to access Wyscout or InStat then explore whole leagues in other countries. Watch full matches and do write-ups on each player in each team. Yes, time consuming but even an Excel spreadsheet which spans across an entire league with a rating system can incredibly valuable information.
Those few little tips may keep you occupied during the tough times. I have seen too many scouts lose interest and report on the struggle they face - essentially scouting is extremely hard work, but it's meant to be born out of passion too.
If you can bolster your CV, display a dedication and willingness to improve in ALL areas then you stand a great chance in making a career within the game. Go to interviews and meetings with an arsenal of evidence that suggests a global pandemic could never halt your progress.