Our Coaches

The Foundation work hard to ensure our coaches have the skills needed to deliver high quality activities that allow all participants to learn the game in a fun and safe environment.

If your son or daughter takes part in any of our activities they will hopefully know our coaches very well.


Neil Gallagher

Neil has been coaching for 4 years. He has been with the West Lothian Youth Foundation since August 2014. In addition, he also does work for our partners at West Lothian Council and Xcite.

On top of this Neil also help out at Broxburn Athletic Colts. Neil holds the Scottish FA Children’s Award on the Children’s pathway and Coaching in the Game on the adult pathway.

Neil played football up until he was 18, mainly in the Edinburgh leagues with Hutchison Vale, Fernieside and North Merchiston and a short half season at Broxburn. He has the unfortunate record of playing in 6 finals for clubs and school and not winning one!

Neil currently delivers a number of the Foundations activities including Primary School Futsal, Micro Academy, Football Fans in Training programme plus many more.


Andrew Cowan

Andrew is the West Lothian Youth Foundation’s Co-ordinator. He is responsible for keeping the Foundation’s finances in check as well as arranging our programmes.
Andrew has been coaching for over 7 years and within that time has gained an HND in Sports Coaching with Sports Development and a degree in Sport and Exercise Science (Sports Coaching). Andrew has been heavily involved in coaching for the SFA and West Lothian Council in local primary schools and out in the community. Andrew has worked as a Sports Development Assistant in the past where he was responsible for running the Scottish FA’s Midnight League programme amongst other roles.

Andrew has experience in coaching boys and girls from the ages of 3 all the way up to 18. This has covered both recreational and elite performers and has gained his Scottish FA Children’s Award. He also has an Intermediate Goalkeeping Certificate and is looking to gain his Children’s License within the next year.

Andrew currently delivers a number of the Foundations activities including Primary School Futsal, Micro Academy, Boys Club Coaching and many more.


Laura Thomson

Laura has been coaching for just over 9 years doing a list of different programmes for different companies, clubs and associations home and abroad. She has an HND in Sports Coaching and Development and has a number of SFA coaching qualifications including Disability and Scouting.

She was part of the coaching team for the Scottish Homeless Worlds Cup squad in the Homeless World Cup in 2011 and has coached in New York. Laura is also currently playing for Linlithgow Rose.

Laura has been with the foundation since early 2015 and will be involved in the Primary School Futsal and Girls Development pod.


Derek White

Derek began coaching, as a volunteer, with the Foundation aged 14.

He currently plays at Livingston FC within their Development Squad as a defender. Derek has been is the Livingston FC youth setup since he was 12 years old.

Derek has just completed high school and is about to embark on a university degree where he will be studying sports science. Derek of course is still hoping to become a full time professional footballer. Derek has gained his Scottish FA 1.3 coaching qualifications on both the children’s and adult pathway.

Derek delivers at our Micro Academy, Saturday Soccer School and Over 35’s Programme.


Kyle Miller

Kyle has been coaching with the WLYF for over a year and has been coaching for 2 years. Kyle obtained an HND in Fitness Health and Exercise from West Lothian College and is now studying towards a degree in the sporting field. He also has his Scottish FA 1.1 Early Touches qualification.

Kyle currently plays for Livingston United Juniors. He has had trials at Raith Rovers, Hamilton and most recently at Livingston FC. He started playing for his local side Livingston Star at the age of 6 before joining Dundee United at the age of 9.

Kyle delivers the Foundations Micro Academy and Boys Club coaching.

Chris Shanks

Chris has been coaching for over 5 years now and joins us with a HND in Sports Coaching and also a BA Honours Degree in Sports Studies from the University of Stirling.  He is actively progressing through the ‘Main Pathway’ with his SFA Badges, qualified up to level 4 in all routes. He is currently sitting his UEFA B Licence and aims to enrol on the Advanced Children’s Licence later this year.

Chris has been involved with our partner organisation Livingston FC for the past two seasons, where he takes one of the professional youth squads.  He has amassed experience through working on various community programmes.  A keen student of the game, Chris looks to implement his knowledge and experience into all his work with the Foundation and seeks to contribute all he can to our team.

Chris currently delivers a number of the Foundations activities including School of Football, Primary School Futsal, Micro Academy, Boys Club Coaching, Smiley Milers, Sporting Chances and Boys Development Pods. He joined the team at the beginning of 2017.

Kieran North

Kieran is currently completing a Community Job Scotland placement with the Foundation. He will be working with the Foundation for a full year and takes up the position of Trainee Community Coach.

During his role with the Foundation, Kieran will learn everything there is to know about becoming a Community Football Coach, including the creation, development and delivery of programmes and initiatives along with all the administrative duties linked to the role.

Kieran currently holds his Scottish FA Early Touches qualification. An important part of his job role with the Foundation will involve his completion of further Scottish FA coaching qualifications.

Kieran volunteers at local team Polbeth United.

Graham Jarvis

Graham has been coaching over 15 years and within that time has gained a BSC in sports coaching with sports development. Throughout that time Graham has spent vast majority of time coaching grassroots football from local primary schools to coaching under 9 and under 12 football teams.

He has an Intermediate Goalkeeping Certificate as well a 1.3 in the Scottish FA’s Children Qualification. Graham has experience in coaching a wide range of ages from 3-18 and can coach on all positions football, currently leading our Goalkeeping Academy on a Thursday evening.

Graham combines his coaching role working full time and is a family man and has a firm philosophy that attitude counts for everything within football and in life.

Scott-WoodhouseWEBScott Woodhouse

Scott has been coaching for several years now and joins us with a HND in Sports Coaching and is actively progressing through the ‘Main Pathway’ with his SFA Badges, he is currently sitting his ‘B’ Licence.

Scott has already gained his Scottish FA ‘C’ Licence and Children’s Award.

An ex Semi Professional player, with Bellshill AFC and Whitburn Juniors, before work commitments took over, Scott bring this experience and knowledge to the team along with his passion and enthusiasm for the game. Alongside his work for the Foundation, Scott coaches for Livingston FC Pro Youth.

Scott is part of the Foundations Primary School Futsal coaching staff, a Micro Academy & a Development Pod coach.