Dashun Cooper ‘buzzing’ after becoming coach at Crystal Palace
Dashun Cooper is “buzzing” after realising his dream of joining the coaching staff of an English Premier League club.
The 29-year-old has been appointed as a goalkeeping coach at Crystal Palace’s Development Centre on a part-time basis.
“I am buzzing and it’s definitely been a dream of mine ever since I got to visit West Ham a couple of years back,” an elated Cooper told The Royal Gazette.
“I am definitely very excited for it and it means a lot because I now have my foot in the door of a Premier League club, and that’s so massive.
“I have an opportunity to potentially get a full -time position within the club and I am really excited for the future.”
The former X-Roads goalkeeper will work with players aged nine to 13 who are involved in the second tier of the club’s academy.
“Crystal Palace have three tiers for the academy so tier one would be their school programmes, youth programmes and stuff like that,” Cooper explained. “And then tier two, which is where I am at the Development Centre, they will get recommended from tier one to join tier two.
“Tier three would be the actual main academy itself. So you can get recommended from tier two to tier three and some of the players we coach would be on a pathway to potentially play for the academy and be offered a scholarship deal.
“Something that made the news the other day was a player in Crystal Palace’s under-21s right now who actually came up through the Palace for Life Foundation program, so I am buzzing.”
Cooper is now involved with two clubs in England as he is also the head of goalkeeping at semi-professional side Hartley Wintney and his appointment at Palace arrives hot on the heels of him obtaining his Uefa Goalkeeping B badge in October.
The Uefa Goalkeeping B Licence course helps successful candidates acclimatise to the demands associated with semi-professional and professional football and is mandatory in order to apply or work full time in professional clubs.