/ Soccer Player Development Course

Learn How to Identify & Develop Soccer Talent Worldwide

In just eight weeks, you can learn the art of identifying & developing the rising stars of soccer around the world, straight from LA Galaxy's Sr. Director of Player Personnel, Gordon Kljestan.

To enhance your soccer career and advance your knowledge of developing talent, our 8-week online Soccer Player Development course will take you to the next level. Taught by LA Galaxy's Sr. Director of Player Personnel, Gordon Kljestan, you’ll be shown how to identify youth soccer players, what pathways they take from academy to first-team, and the role of the academy.

Weekly Live Interactive Zoom Chats with Gordon Kljestan

August 12

Weekly Live Interactive Zoom Chats with Gordon Kljestan

TUESDAY 5:30pm PT8:30pm ET WEDNESDAY 12:30am GMT
8-week online course
Access to SMWW network
Resume enhancement
Ongoing career advice
Class size limited to 30 students




Learn More About Becoming a Soccer Player Development Student Learn More About Becoming a Soccer Player Development Student

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Why our Soccer Player Development Course is right for you

The development of soccer players starts at a younger and younger age each year, which means the need to identify players who can be the next super-stars is always growing. Youth Academies are the lifeblood of a club and their impacts can be felt for decades at the First-Team level.

FC Barcelona’s La Masia, Athletic Bilbao’s Cantera, Ajax Youth Team, and Philadelphia Union’s Academy, are all prime examples of the power to identify young talent and develop them into stars.

At SMWW, you'll learn how to identify the rising soccer stars of tomorrow!

Led by former MLS player, and current LA Galaxy Sr. Director of Player Personnel, Gordon Kljestan, our 8-week online course is a one-of-a-kind experience to learn the art of identifying soccer talent.

Unlike most online classes, we focus our program on interactive Zoom video chats directly with Gordon Kljestan and fellow students, which allows you the opportunity to build personal relationships and rapport with these successful soccer industry leaders. After completing our Soccer Player Development course, we will help you redesign your resume to highlight your new skills and include that you have been taught first-hand by Gordon Kljestan. Now that is powerful!

Soccer Player Development Course Breakdown

Here is what you can look forward to learning about over the eight weeks in our course!

Week 1: Introduction to Talent Identification and Player Analysis
Week 2: Qualities Scouts and Coaches Look For in Players
Week 3: The Role of Academies in Talent Identification
Week 4: Academy Structures by Country
Week 5: Lessons for the world’s best academies
Week 6: Player Pathway Studies: From Academy to First Team
Week 7: Talent Identification Biases
Week 8: Putting it all together

Meet Your Soccer Player Development Mentor

Gordon Kljestan - LA Galaxy Sr. Director of Player Personnel

Gordon Kljestan is the LA Galaxy's Sr. Director of Player Personnel. A Huntington Beach, CA native, Kljestan received his Sports Management degree from Seton Hall University. Kljestan was drafted by LA Galaxy in the 2007 MLS draft. He is now in his 13th season with LA Galaxy. His day-to-day duties with the club include salary cap and roster compliance, player contracts, and immigration. Gordon Kljestan holds a USSF B coaching license and is currently enrolled in the FIFA Diploma Course for Club Management.


Liam Ridgewell - Former EPL and MLS Footballer

Liam Ridgewell is an English-born footballer, who has spent over 23 years playing the game. Ridgwell started his career at the West Ham United Youth Academy before moving to Aston Villa and winning the 2002 FA Youth Cup. Ridgwell, a Defender, played 15 years in the English Premier League, most notably with Birmingham City. In 2014, Liam moved to the MLS club, Portland Timbers, where he made 97 appearances and won the MLS Cup in 2015 as Captain of the Timbers. Liam returned to the EPL side Hull City in 2019. In total, Liam played in over 400 professional soccer games. He now serves as a broadcaster and sideline commentator for the Portland Timbers. In our live weekly Zoom chats, Liam is excited to get to know you and assist you with Talent Identification as it relates to your career, be it a coach, scout, agent, or parent.


Dr. Lynn Lashbrook

Dr. Lynn Lashbrook, the president and founder of SMWW, has over 40 years of combined experience as a Sports Agent, Educator, Coach, Scout, and NCAA Athletic Director. Dr. Lashbrook manages the SMWW Agency representing over 200 Agent Advisors and athletes worldwide including EPL and MLS clients. Lynn led the Oregon lobbying efforts that resulted in a $150 million construction bill for a new stadium in Portland. Due to this campaign, a 25,000-seat stadium in the heart of the city was revitalized rather than torn down, now home to the MLS Portland Timbers.

What Happens After I Complete the Course?

Upon successful graduation from the Soccer Player Development course you'll have many options:

Become an SMWW Scout:

Graduates will be invited to join SMWWscouts.com, our network of professional scouts working across all sports and in all countries.

You will advertise yourself as a certified scout and trained evaluator. Teams, coaches, and agents use this service to find qualified talent evaluators in areas they need them.

We become your match-makers!

The site will include your own webpage with your picture and biography and samples of your best scouting reports. As a graduate of the Soccer Player Development course, you are eligible to apply for acceptance as an SMWW scout and be featured on this website free!

Work for a Team:

Our goal is to see all Soccer Player Development graduates gainfully employed in soccer worldwide. Our team at SMWW will customize a soccer portfolio to assist you with your career in soccer.

Through our extensive network of professional and collegiate soccer teams and organizations worldwide, our objective is to prepare you for when the right job opportunities become available. Numerous people that have gone through our programs are now employed in great positions and you could do the same. We want to help you launch your soccer career and help you find a position where you can be the most successful and satisfied.

Course Certificate:

Successful graduates of the Sports Management Worldwide courses will be sent an SMWW Certificate of Accomplishment. This certificate represents not only your achievements in the course but also demonstrates your personal commitment to self-improvement and the ability to "self-train" yourself for higher positions within the sports business industry.

In addition to your certificate, you will be given the stamp of approval by SMWW.

Resume Redesign Service

Acquiring the skills necessary for your dream sports career is only one part of the employment journey. Even with the required skill set, you still have to market yourself properly to attract the attention of sports industry employers.

At SMWW, we’ll teach you the skills you need to thrive AND help you redesign your resume for optimal impact in the sports industry. We’ll help you craft a resume to highlight your new skills in the Soccer Player Development course including a reference from Gordon Kljestan and Dr. Lashbrook while optimizing it to reach hiring managers searching online.

We want you to become the next SMWW success story and will go to great lengths to help you get there!

Course Details

Weekly Interactive Zoom Video Chats: A unique aspect of each 8-week course is the opportunity for students to participate in weekly, interactive Zoom video chats with fellow students, Liam Ridgewell, Dr. Lashbrook, SMWW mentors, SMWW agents, certified agents in all sports, professional athletes, and renowned guest speakers. This is a tremendous opportunity to network within the professional and collegiate sports industry by getting to know your instructors and fellow students personally via the Internet. This allows ample opportunity to network, ask questions, and discuss aspects of the course openly with instructors and classmates. The interactive Zoom video chats are available via any online computer with a microphone. If you are unable to attend the chats, they are archived and you can listen at a more convenient time. These chats are so popular that graduates continue to come back and participate to enhance their opportunities. 

Online Education: This innovative academic course is facilitated through a Web-based educational delivery system. You will enjoy the online discussion boards, weekly readings, weekly quizzes, course projects, and interaction amongst fellow sports business-minded students and faculty. The course content is the foundation for a successful career as a sports agent.

Global Participation: SMWW students participate from over 162 countries. Courses have an international influence and instructors will cater assignments to specific countries or leagues. Countries with economic challenges are eligible for economic discounts.

University Credit Available: For additional fees to Fort Hays State University in Kansas, you may receive graduate or undergraduate university credit for Sports Management Worldwide's courses. Click here for more information.

Sports Career Conferences: Throughout the year, Sports Management Worldwide hosts Sports Career Conferences at a variety of sporting events. These are fabulous networking events that put SMWW alumni in the heart of the action. Opportunities to meet head coaches, GMs, player personnel, scouts, and fellow sports agents are facilitated. Visit SMWW Sports Career Conferences to learn more. SMWW alumni receive discounts.

Advanced Certificates: Want to take your career to the next level? Our Advanced Certificates have been hand-selected by our team of sports industry experts to put you on a path to success. These bundles allow you to take advantage of our biggest discount available, by bundling multiple courses and becoming an expert in that field. Learn more about our Advanced Certificates here.

Military Discount: For those individuals who represent their country in military service, (active, reserve, or retired) we offer a discount. Thank you for serving your country! For more information on the Military Discount please Click Here.

Tax Write Off (For USA Citizens): SMWW course tuition, books, and supplies can be used for education tax credits. Save your receipts and consult with your tax advisor on how this applies to you.


Or a single payment of $1,650

Includes all course textbooks and access to a web-based classroom. Shipping is additional.


If we offer an economic discount in your country, it is included in the estimate above. Exact pricing including the discount is shown before you complete checkout. Payment plan options are provided during checkout.

Prerequisites: Must be 18 or older to participate and have a passion for sports.
(In the UK: 087 12884799)

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Thank you! We will let you know as soon as course dates are announced!