Nottingham Forest’s Sianna Bennett has taken up a new role with the club’s Regional Talent Club (RTC) for this upcoming season which sees her become the under-12’s assistant coach.
Bennett will be working alongside Nottingham Forest Reserve team coach, Aston Dyer, as she takes up her first role, along with playing, with the club. Working with the RTC isn’t the only coaching role Bennett will work this season as she is also the women’s second football and futsal team coach at the University of Nottingham.
Explaining what first inspired her to get into coaching football Bennett said: “I first got into coaching through my friends at college, I only started doing it for some extra pocket money at first as I was only 16 so I was never ‘inspired’ as such.
“It was only until I did my Level Two coaching badge and started coaching at the University of Nottingham with Tanya Oxtoby where I really got inspired to coach more.
“Being able to learn and understand the game more from people like that really inspired me to improve my coaching ability.
“I get inspired and learn a lot from the people who coach me (Especially Andy and Dan at Forest), they both have a different way of coaching so its eye opening to watch two very different coaches being able to get the same picture across to the players.”
Along with inspiring the future generation of Reds by playing for the Forest first team Bennett also helps shape their footballing future through coaching and she explains how that’s one of the reasons she enjoys her role so much.
“It really is a great feeling being able to coach the next generation, seeing how far the game has come and how good players now are at such a young age is amazing,” Bennett said.
“Their understanding of the game is unreal and to think it’s only going to get better with age and experience is exciting.
“Their technical ability is also through the roof, I think they’d give me a run for my money!”
Speaking on Sianna’s appointment to the RTC, Technical Director Kevin Lock said “Having a player and a person like Sianna as a coach at the RTC is fantastic. We have coach who interacts and inspires our younger players, as a result of her persona she has become very much a role model. Sianna herself came through a programme similar to our own RTC, this is definitely helping her coaching and helping our future stars of tomorrow develop. We are very lucky to have a coach like Sianna involved in the RTC.
Looking ahead to her future in coaching Bennett explains where she can see her career spanning out.
She said: “I’d love to grow as a coach and coach at a higher level, at the moment I’m really enjoying my coaching with the RTC and at the University of Nottingham so that’s all that matters to me.
“I’m gaining valuable experience every day, which is pretty important before I make any further steps forward.”
Playing, coaching and enjoying a life away from the field has proven to be a handful for Bennett but one she is enjoying and dealing with well.
“It’s difficult to juggle playing, coaching two different teams and working outside of football,” Bennett explained.
“I’m a bit of a busy bee, so you have to make a lot of sacrifices and understand that some days might be very tiring but at the end of the day it’s all worth it.
“I love my job, I love playing at Forest and I love coaching and helping the next generation develop at our RTC, so I enjoy every minute of it! “
Forest Women General Manager, Lee Billiard, had this to say on Sianna’s involvement “It is important for us a whole club to have senior players involved in some capacity with the RTC and our grassroots programmes. The senior first team is where our younger players aspire to be, and are working towards. What better way to aid their development to have senior players working with them and passing on their knowledge from what they go through as a senior player, both on and off the pitch.”
Billiard continued, “It is also important for us as a club to aid the development of our senior players outside of being a player. If we can provide opportunities, experience and pass on knowledge to senior players who want to start a career path in coaching or other football related roles, that we help them with those transitions”