Dutch Pro Academy Training Sessions Vol 2 PDF

Dutch Pro Academy Training Sessions Vol 2 PDF

 World Class Coaching in conjunction with Terry Michler’s Dutch Touch sponsored a 9-day coaches tour of Holland and Germany. Coaches from Europe, the US and the Caribbean were treated to an outstanding overview of soccer in the Netherlands, with an emphasis on player development and coach education.
As well as a full program of observing pro, youth and top amateur teams playing and training; seminars and the opportunity to question and interact with top coaches, we enjoyed excellent hospitality, food and friendship as well as unseasonably sunny weather with a little bit of tourism thrown in for good measure.
In addition to crisscrossing the small country of Holland, we ventured into Germany for a tour of Schalke ‘04’s impressive Veltins Arena and training complex as well as a pleasant stroll along the splendid Rhine promenade in old town Dusseldorf. Our tour group, made up of club, college, school and youth national team coaches was based at the comfortable Hotel De Oude Molen (“Old Mill”) in the picturesque town of Groesbeek, Gelderland, 15 km from Nijmegen and 2 km from the German border.
Though a small town, Groesbeek is home to two of the region’s top third division teams, De Treffers and Achilles FC.
Though technically described as amateur teams, in reality they are high-level semi-pro clubs more similar to AAA baseball farm teams in the US or to high level Conference football teams in the UK.
Each own modest stadiums; full training facilities, clubhouses with bars, restaurants, executive lounges and fanshops; as well as large youth and amateur divisions.
Gelderland is the largest province of the Netherlands, located in the eastern part of the country.
While the cities of Nijmegen - the oldest city in the Netherlands – and Arnhem and their famous Rhine bridges are perhaps best known to many Brits and Americans as ground zero for WWII’s Operation Market Garden, (“A Bridge Too Far”), soccer-wise they are home to Eredivisie clubs Vitesse Arnhem, NEC Nijmegen and to De Graafschap based in nearby Doetinchem.
Our tour was organized by Jan Pruijn, currently the Head of Technical Affairs at Ajax Cape Town. Pruijn has served as the head of the Ajax International Youth Development where he was responsible for the establishment of the “Ajax-way” program for Ajax branches in South Africa, Ghana, and Belgium.
He has also served as the head coach of NEC Nijmegen and Helmond Sport as well as working for the KNVB, the Lebanese F.A., A.F.C Amsterdam and De Treffers FC.
Additionally, we were hosted by former KNVB instructors Harry Jensen and Theo Dirks, former NEC youth coach Remco Ten Hoopen, Trekvogels coach Joost Van Eldon and coach and author Terry Michler.
The Coaches Tour was held in conjunction with a game and training tour for a selection of U14 CBC Dutch Touch players and parents from the St Louis area as well as a tour of the women’s soccer team from Central College in Pella, Iowa.
Journal Glossary:
• KNVB (Koninklijke Nederlandse Voetbal Bond) or the Royal Netherlands Football Association; the equivalent of the English FA or the USSF headquartered in Zeist.
• “Point forward” or “point back”: Refers to the arrangement of the three midfield players in the 4-3- 3 formation. “Point back” is with 1 defensive and 2 attacking midfield players and “point forward” is with 2 defensive and 1 attacking midfield players.
• Eredivisie (Honor Division), Dutch 1st division or highest level of professional play in the Netherlands.
• Eerste Divisie (First Division), second tier of professional play in the Netherlands and often referred to the Juliper League after its sponsor; not to be confused with the same name for the Belgian first division.
• Topklasse, semi-professional play. The third tier of Dutch soccer.
• Hoofdklasse, the highest level of amateur play, and the fourth tier of Dutch soccer.
Observations on Soccer in the Netherlands:
Much has been made and written of the “Dutch Secret” for or the Dutch Vision for producing players, teams and coaches far outsize of their population. While there is plenty of room for debate about the success of the Dutch national team in major tournaments, its more physical style of play in the last World Cup, or the current level of play in the Eredivisie, there is little doubt that for a country of 16 million, the Dutch punch well “above their weight” in the hierarchy of world soccer. All of the Dutch coaches we met were extremely proud of this and generally attributed their country’s success due to a.) the level of coach education and development and b.) the focus on the development of players as individuals as well as members of team. The Netherlands has the highest per capita ratio of licensed coaches of any country in the world. The overwhelmingly popular formation in the Netherlands is 4-3-3 with primary variations being the arrangements of the 3 midfield players. The conventional 4-4-2 is unusual though 4-4-2 with a diamond shaped midfield or 4-2-3-1 were seen.
Other Notable Observations:
The KNVB exerts robust centralized control over all aspects of both youth and senior soccer in the country, including coach and player development through its 6 Regional Centers as well as the KNVB Academy headquartered at Zeist. This translates into a strong and clear vision of training methodology, coach education and even club organizational structure. In my opinion, this - while seemingly paradoxical - furthers the development of individually creative players by providing a clear structure in which to develop inventiveness and spontaneity.
Special thanks to coaches and fellow tour participants Gerry Montague, Rob Dorey, Dylan Lienart, Jacek Pobiedzinski and Terry Michler for a sharing pictures, videos and information for this journal; Joost van Elden for help with translations; Katia Paroczi for video editing; and Astrid Pruijn for her patience and organizational skill with the tour.
Additional Information:
Additional information and material on soccer in Holland can be found in World Class Coaching’s on-line “Dutch Sessions” issue which includes material from Jan Pruijn, Terry Michler and Remco Ten Hoopen as well as Dave Clarke’s extended PSV Journal. Michael Sokolove provides an excellent view of Ajax’s Academy in the New York Times Magazine entitles "How a Soccer Star is Made.” Other excellent books on soccer in the Netherlands are available at worldclasscoaching.com.
Author Biography:
Dave Brown is the Director of Coaching for the WFC Rangers premier youth club in Bellingham, WA. In addition to being a former high school, college and ODP coach, he has coached at the top youth level for over 20 years and was Washington State’s co-winningest coach for five years, winning several state championships. His former players have gone on to play professionally in the MLS and WUSA as well as earning U17, U20 and full US National team honors. He holds the USSF “B” National Coaching license and the Director of Coaching certificate from the NSCAA.

Dutch Pro Academy Training Sessions Vol 2 PDF

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