To start a new position at a football club is always exiting. You have little information of the club but you always want to make an impression from the first moment you enter.

The normal procedure would be, or if you want to buy yourself some time, to evaluate for a few weeks the situation within the club and then you start making your changes. For me however it is not the first position within a football club to change the football philosophy. For me it means that I come in with a plan and I try to re-create this plan with the existing staff. If I need extra personnel then I will convince the club to hire these people.

The procedure for me is first to organize the desirable structure with the football parts that I think are needed to have a strong football department or to have a strong academy within the club. Ideally is that you can influence the football philosophy from youth to first team.

For different reasons that would be the best way:

  1. To implement “one” football culture / philosophy
  2. To be sure that the effects from the academy investments are visible
  3. Implement youth players in the first team
  4. To measure your success on the long term

My experiences come from the different clubs that I worked for in the last 30 years in youth and professional football. From being an academy graduate, to a first team player, to an academy coach in becoming a professional football manager. All clubs give you the opportunity to develop yourself and with that your football philosophy. All clubs also give you opportunities to create, on their budget level, a strong academy structure or football department structure.

From the start of my coaching career I created my philosophy around the things that I thought are important in football: meaning the team and the individual player.

These two elements I always consider when I start working on my training and match philosophy for my club. The stability comes from working on a daily, weekly basis on your football philosophy with teams and coaches.

The direction that you want to go combined with the choice of training exercises will give you always a head start over clubs that leave these things up to their team coaches.  To leave it up to coaches and not make it a club or academy philosophy will give you a lot of academies within your academy.

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