ANB Soccer

ANB Academy Director Attends European Football Coaching Symposium

November 4, 2008 (RELEASE) -- From October 25-29th, Bassam Naim, Director of The ANB Academy Futbol, attended by invitation, the 29th Symposium of the Alliance of European Football Coaches Associations (AEFCA), hosted by the German Football Federation Frankfurt, Germany. The conference included high level representatives of all European soccer federations. Andy Roxborough, UEFA Technical Director, Jean-Michel Benezet, FIFA Technical Director and Matthias Sammer, DFB-Director of Sports, amongst others, were in attendance.

Dr Joseph Venglos, President of AEFCA (left),
Bassam Naim, ANB Program Director (centre),
and Matthias Sammer, DFB-Director of Sports

The theme of the Symposium was New Trends of the EURO 2008 Relevant to Grassroots Football Major topics of the conference included:

Lessons from Euro 2008 and implications for youth development,
Technical sessions focusing on elite player and team tactical play, and
Womens World Cup 2011.

Of particular interest to the ANB Soccer Academy were the observations on the nature of play in the Euro 2008, and how this might influence coaching and youth development. In addition, there were some specific aspects of goalkeeper training that were of interest.

With regards to the lessons learned from Euro 2008, discussions focused on:

the speed of the game,
the speed of reaction of players,
the superior technical abilities of players,
and the quick short precise passing by the Spanish team.

The earlier we start the technical development of athletes the better, was the consensus at the conference and the implication for youth development. This was certainly the case for the German and Spanish youth teams as they made strong arguments for training. Training must be age related, and players who are more naturally talented should be placed in a more challenging environment to excel their development, said Matthias Sammer, the Director of Sport for the DFB.

The importance of the modern goalkeeper was also highlighted during the conference. Today's goalkeeper is not only a shot stopper and a team organizer in the back, he or she is a technically sound player, a good passer of the ball in general, and a good ball distributor in particular.

European soccer federations are very advanced in coaching and developing players to compete at the highest professional levels. They also excel in making the game fun for those that have a passion for soccer. European soccer federations benefit from years of history, and have over time established training and development programs which are proven successful. The system of player development in Canada can benefit from implementing lessons learned in Europe such as those discussed at this AEFCA conference.

ANB academy is committed to adopting the principles of European youth development and continues to refine its approach to developing elite Canadian soccer players. Anyone interested in discussing the conference is welcome to contact Bassam Naim at 905-313-8661 or email ANB soccer at

Further details of the conference agenda are as follows:

FIFA Technical Development Programs- Jean-Michel Benezet, FIFA Technical Director
Trends of the EURO 2008 From the DFBs Perspective
UEFAs Top Competitions 2008 A Global View, Andy Roxborough, UEFA Technical Director
EURO 2008 Personal Impressions - Fatih Tarim, Head Coach Turkish National Team
EURO 2008 Lessons to be learned
The Leadership Role of the Top Coach - Andy Roxborough, UEFA Technical Director
The DFB Coach Education Program
Characteristics of Goalkeeping at EURO 2008 Consequences for Training, Jorg Daniel DFB
Practical Session I Defensive Play - Team Tactical Realization - Heiko Herrlich, Head Coach U-19 German National Team
Practical Session II Creating Chances - Team Tactical Realization - Frank Engel, Head Coach U-18 German National Team
The DFB Talent Development Philosophy - Matthias Sammer, DFB-Director of Sports
Promotion of Elite Players - Matthias Sammer, DFB-Director of Sports
Sometimes Reality Exceeds Your Wildest Dreams - Gines Melendez Sotos, Director Coach Training Spanish FA, Head Coach Spanish U-17 National Team
From the 2006 World Cup to the World Cup 2011 - FIFA Womens World Cup 2011

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