Claire talked to RedTV this week after joining the AFC Women’s team recently as assistant coach.
“I’ve came in as an assistant coach to Gavin and Emma. And just looking to support them and the rest of the team that’s came in this season to help provide the best opportunities for the players here at the club.
“I started coaching a long time ago, when I was actually still playing at the time. I was out injured for a while so I began doing my coaching badges nice and early. I was at University and was 17 or 18 years old. At the start I was just getting on the pitch, picking up cones for people, watching and learning from other coaches that I met. As I progressed, I continued playing and enjoyed doing some coaching in my spare time, when that was possible. And I did a lot of work through the Scottish FA with their original performance programmes – which is working with the best young players in the area.
“That’s where a lot of my experiences came from. And then as it developed, I was fortunate enough to have opportunities at this club when I came in on an internship with the AFC Youth Academy one year. I’m still currently doing two programmes with the Scottish FA.
“And then I had an opportunity to be involved with Forfar Farmington as well, where I helped as an assistant coach for about six years.
“So all that experiences kind of led me to this moment, I guess it’s something that I’ve always wanted to do, that is work within our club with the women’s team. And I’m just very pleased to be involved now.”
One of the real unsung heroes at Pittodrie, Claire’s day job is with the AFC Community Trust, where she is the Senior Community Projects Officer.
“For the Community Trust I work within our education pillar. So I oversee the skills programmes, all the programmes we do in primary schools, and I have also been involved in the secondary school programmes as well. So quite a large remit at the moment.
“We’re working across over 26 schools in the city and Aberdeenshire. We are just trying to make an impact on young people’s lives and looking to give them better opportunities. We are looking to help them with their health and wellbeing, particularly their mental health.
“It does mean that I don’t have many days off, especially after taking on this new role with the AFC Women’s team. And as I say, I do still have a few roles with the SFA as well.
“So I think Friday evenings are about my only free night at the moment! But I enjoy it, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I think that’s part of being involved in football, you put in the time and effort and then you get the rewards on the pitch hopefully with the results. And that’s what we do it for, hopefully help the players and the team get better.
“I am just doing my bit for the club. And my bit to help the women’s game.”
To watch the interview in full please click on the red button.