Coaching Feature: Zayn Khan
I’ve loved the game of soccer since early childhood. Most of my summers were spent with family in England, playing with my cousins whilst developing a love for Liverpool Football Club. Eventually I started playing through Aloha Youth Soccer, at Aloha High School and most memorable for me with the Aloha multicultural club; a team and league that was started for those who couldn’t afford to play club soccer (most of my Aloha HS teammates). It is in that league that I learned the most and, more significantly, realized that it is more important to enjoy the experience than what league you’re playing in. There were bigger and better places to play but above all I wanted to enjoy myself, and I did.
I then went to college and was a Biology Pre-Med student before realizing that all I thought about was footy, and as such should make it my career. I switched my major to Kinesiology and began coaching at Crescent Valley High school before joining Corvallis Soccer Club and working as the Director of Operations for Oregon State’s Men’s team.
During my time in Corvallis I came to know my passion that runs alongside soccer: working with kids. As much as I enjoyed working in a soccer environment, it is the bonds with the kids that I work with that I enjoy the most. Personal achievements are always nice, but helping someone else work for something and attaining it is so much more fulfilling.
And with that I came to PCU. Once I decided to move back home I spoke with my two mentors in Corvallis who both mentioned this club. I followed up with my friend Ashton (see lasts months coaching feature) and my decision was made. PCU is a family club that teaches the same lesson I learned playing with my friends: it is enjoying the experience that matters. They’ve enabled me to share what I know with the kids and continue to grow by getting coaching education. Recently I obtained my National C license and besides the X’s and O’s they stressed the same thing: the kids need to enjoy the experience. It is my goal to get to know each of my kids as players and as people so I can help empower them and create the best experience possible. I always stress to the kids that the game is theirs, not mine or their parent’s. Whenever I coach that’s always my first thought.
I’m blessed to say that every day I get to work with young people, work with soccer and have a ton of fun while doing it.
What a “job” eh?