The AIFF D-License Program – The First Step Towards Becoming a Coach

 In Game

A guide to acquiring the AIFF D License for becoming a football coach in India.

Year on year, as football widens its reach and popularity in India, the idea that it could be a viable career choice takes a deeper hold among those who are passionate about the game. If you’ve ever interacted with a die-hard football fan, you’d have noticed how everyone has an opinion on how their team could do better tactically. Here’s an opportunity to take that foresight and put it to use, along with the technical direction and capability to manage a team. While the football industry is still in its nascent stage in India, the AIFF has opened up several opportunities for people interested in pursuing coaching professionally.

Here’s all you need to know about the AIFF D License:

The AIFF D-Licence Course is regarded as an introductory step to professional football coaching in India. The course deals in teaching the basics of football coaching methodologies to rookie coaches. The course duration is 6 days.

What are the technical pre-requisites required to apply?

While anyone can apply for the license, applicants must possess a basic understanding of how the game works in terms of applicable laws, while also being able to meet the physical fitness criteria needed to carry out the job. Prior experience is always an added advantage. Participants can assist coaching staff in training/ grassroots academies and schools to help build a stronger portfolio and better their understanding of the game.

As per the AIFF program, the criteria based on which a candidate can apply to participate in the course are:

Participants should have playing experience and knowledge of the game at any level.

All Participants must be examined by an MBBS Doctor before the course starts and declared healthy and fit to perform the practical lessons during the course. A Fitness Certificate stating that the candidate is physically fit to participate for the practical sessions in the course has to be produced for the same.

  1. Participants should have the knowledge of English (reading and writing) since the medium of instruction and course materials are in English.
  2. Active Referees participation: Active Referees can also participate up to AFC ‘C’ Certificate Coaching Course.
  3. Participants should be committed to Coaching and be willing to actively continue Coaching.
  4. It is compulsory for all the participants to attend all the sessions.
  5. Participants bear all costs involved in the participation of the Course including study material, playing kit etc.
  6. A D-Licence holder will be able to Coach in grassroots football, college and school teams, district and inter-city championships etc.

The duration and frequency of the program

AIFF D-Licenses are held on requests of State Associations who wish to mobilize resources towards training individuals interested in these programs. On an average, 10 courses are held every year but the number might increase/decrease based on requests from State FAs and availability of instructors. On an average The AIFF D-License Course lasts for 5 days. 

Instructors and curriculum

The instructors will be coaches with a minimum of AFC B-License certificate and certified in the AIFF D-License instructor’s program. The curriculum covers qualitative aspects such as the principles of coaching, basic elements of football, attacking and defending, small-sided games, warming-up, fun games, how to organise a training session, nutrition, communication, laws of the game, and grassroots training approach.

Passing the test

The State FAs select top candidates who prove their mettle in the program. A combination of practical and theory tests are used to determine if a candidate has passed or failed the program.

The AIFF D-License program is perfect for candidates looking to kickstart their coaching career and get involved with Grassroots and School Football, conditioning and training young footballers on the fundamentals of the game.

Forca Goa will be running AIFF D-License programs soon. If you’re interested, write to us at

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