Ali Colman was a coach in Norwich's Academy for a number of years, for instance coaching the Under-11s in 2010/11. He progressed to the role of Head of Foundation Phase Coaching.
In October 2018, Ali left the club following the review of the Academy. Sporting Director Stuart Webber said of the Academy review: "When we reviewed it, it was obvious to me there was an issue with the discipline of players. A lot of these lads maybe don’t come from fantastic backgrounds, so we have to give them manners, where they might not have had a role model or a parent to look up to. We have to make them rounded individuals and from that the football builds. Players generally fail because, mentally, they are not in the right place. They all have the same physical and tactical capabilities. I believe we can teach players to be good professionals.You look at how the academy is measured and audited nationally and in terms of producing players we are not good enough. The facts are there. There are reasons for that. When you are in the Premier League it is not easy to blood young players, because the priority is to stay up. The same applies when you are in the Championship and going for promotion. It is a bit of vicious circle, hence perhaps why I am here now and able to look beyond Saturday to Saturday.”