Coach Ian Mork becomes Head Coach of the Belize National Football Team
Ballistic United is extremely proud to announce that Ian Mork, our professional trainer, has been hired to be the head coach of the Belize national football team for the upcoming CONCACAF Gold Cup tournament! Coach Mork has trained Ballistic United players for the past six years and more recently, has been helping train and scout US Academy league players. Ironically, he will be coaching against the US Men's team during the upcoming Gold Cup when Belize compete against the US National team in Portland this summer.
"I am very happy about the opportunity to coach the Belize National Team again. Belize football (soccer) is still in the developing stages, but they have made some amazing steps recently. There is a new, energetic executive at the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) and they have created a positive working environment for the players and coaching staff. The future is very bright here and the players are motivated to reach a higher level. The Gold Cup is the priority right now, but more importantly, the FFB has set their sights on reaching the 2018 World Cup Finals in Russia and I feel honored to be a part of this process."
Ballistic United is proud to include Coach Mork as a key technical staff member in our competitive programs. We wish him the best during this competition, but will be rooting against him when they take on the United States. (sorry Coach Mork! :) )
Ballistic United would like to welcome back Goalkeeper Specialist Kris Hall for the upcoming 2013-14 soccer season. "Kris has a great history with our club reaching back many years. We were disappointed, but supportive when he left last year for a great opportunity at Cal Poly and are fortunate to be able to welcome him back this year! Kris will be assuming the Professional Goal Keeper Trainer position with the club effective March 1st and also be coaching the U13 Elite 2 team this year," said Kevin Crow, BUSC Director of Coaching.
Kris Hall on returning to Ballistic United:
"The Ballistic United Soccer Club has been my home for playing and coaching for over a decade. Going to work at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo was a great opportunity for me to gain experience at the highest collegiate level. I am enthusiastic to return home to Ballistic United and bring my new experiences from Cal Poly and Europe to the talented players in the club."
BUSC U9-12 Director of Coaching spends 10 days observing the Dutch National Team
Hello BUSC Members,
Our U9-12 Director of Coaching, Andrew Ziemer was fortunate enough to recently accompany the Dutch National team by traveling to Holland and Romania for their preparation in two 2014 World Cup Qualifiers against Andorra and Romania. He has been fortunate to be learning and working alongside Frans Hoek, for more than 10 years. When joining the BUSC staff 5 years ago, Andrew was able to bring our club into this relationship by offering the services of Frans Hoek and his staff to our club members via camps and coaching education.
We are privileged at BUSC to learn alongside a coach with such experience spanning Ajax, Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Poland National team, and now the Dutch National team. Our club continues to be out in the forefront in Northern California in terms of coaching education and player development. I have asked Andrew to write a 2-part series about his recent venture abroad for our members to read. The first one should be up next week so keep checking back!
Below is a recap of the first part of my trip abroad. The trip lasted 10 days and covered two World Cup qualifiers.
On October 9, I flew from San Francisco to Amsterdam and was greeted by Serge vd Baan who is the Youth Goalkeeper Coach at Ajax Amsterdam. Serge was recently here at BUSC this past summer and worked with our players during our summer camps. I stayed with Serge at his home in Hoofdorp, which his close to Amsterdam, Noordwijk, where the Dutch team was residing and Katwijk, the training location of the team. I rented a small car and was ready for a nice week of Dutch culture and Voetbal “soccer” education.
From October 9 – 11, the Dutch National team was preparing for the upcoming World Cup Qualifier in Rotterdam, Netherlands, which was scheduled on Friday, October 12. I was able to observe the sessions and learned how at top level the staff work within a clear and unifed vision to achieve results with a specific aim – “Qualify for the World Cup in 2014 in Brazil.”
I was able to stay with my good friend, Frans Hoek and even be a guest at the Trainer Coach II at the KNVB Headquarters (equivalent of US Soccer Federation) on October 18.
The initial main items the technical staff focused on are listed below:
- Player tracking in their own clubs-by watching players live and on T.V.
- Player ranking by position
- Player selection
- Scouting the upcoming opponent(s) – based on injuries/latest games
- Developing the tactical plan for the upcoming game while building the “Way of Playing”
- How to teach and train the game plan for the upcoming game
- Playing the game and getting results
The Dutch National Team Staff consists of 30+ members including:
- Coaching Staff-including specialist training
- Scouting Department
- Medical personnel (massage/trainer/doctor)
- Press (public/media relations)
- Cook (kitchen staff)
- Equipment manager
- Admin (travel, coordination)
A quick little background on the importance of the upcoming games based upon some recent poor performances. In 2010 the Dutch team lost in the World Cup Final in South Africa to Spain, but were not proud of their way of playing. Two years later, in 2012, they imploded at the European Championships in Ukraine/Poland. This was an embarrassment in which they finished last in the group and played a game that was not “Dutch” meaning being both attractive “artistic” and effective ‘winning”.
The KNVB recently hired Louis van Gaal (former coach of Ajax, FC Barcelona, Bayern Munich and the Dutch National Team) and presented him with a clear vision to bring the Famous Dutch “Way of Playing” back. Louis quickly went to work and built a staff whom shared this vision and the required work ethic and expertise to execute. The staff members below are the main individuals responsible for the soccer aspect of the vision.
- Head Coach – Louis van Gaal
- Assistant Coach – Frans Hoek
- Assistant Coach – Danny Blind (former International)
- Assistant Coach – Patrick Kluivert (former International)
- Exercise Physiologist – Jos van Dijk
- Physical Coach – Rene Wormhout
- Head Scout – Cor Pot (also coach of the Dutch U23 National Team)
- Max Reekers - Video Analysis
Louis van Gaal made it clear to everyone, his staff and the players, the KNVB Vision and his way of working. There are no secrets and all players are treated equally.
Everything is based around the
- KNVB Vision
- The Way of Playing
- The System of Play (1:4:3:3 with variations).
Louis has 3 main rules on selecting the team:
- Players must be playing for their club team
- Players must be in top form for their club team
- If a player is injured he goes home and is replaced by a fit player
Louis, Frans and Danny are busy all week traveling throughout Europe to watch players live. Their collective work ethic is something to behold. Their days commonly begin around 7:00 a.m. and on most days finish around 11:30 p.m. daily. For example Frans Hoek who specializes in Goalkeeping tracks
- Maarteen Stelkenburg – AS Roma, Italy
- Tim Krul – Newcastle , England
- Michel Vorm – Swansea City, Wales
- Kenneth Vermeer – Ajax Amsterdam, Netherlands
- Jeroen Zoet – RKC Waalwijk, Netherlands
Frans will travel and watch these 5 goalkeepers live, using a program called Scout 7, in which they can pull up every game in the World after it has been played. He will also be sent all the “moments” of a game on video pertaining to the goalkeepers and defenders that he is responsible for ranking.
All National Team Staff are part time, but each Monday and Tuesday the staff meets at the KNVB Headquarters in Zeist. On Monday, the staff rank all the players from 1-5 per position, based on the 3 main rules mentioned earlier (players are playing, in form and fit). On Tuesday, they present the rankings to Louis with justification for their rankings.
All players are selected by the following criteria within their position during the following moments:
- Ball Possession
- Ball Possession by Opponent
- Transition from Ball Loss and Ball Gain
This is related to the “way of playing” in relation to the opponent and the game plan for the upcoming game. For example, against Andorra the staff chose to play Klaas jan Huntelaar as a deep #9 due to the anticipated game tactics of the opponent in which Andorra sits back and counters. Therefore, Holland anticipated playing most of the game in the half of the opponent. He is a better Center Forward to stay deep and end up in the penalty box. On the other hand, against Romania they chose to play Robin van Persie who tends to come back in between the lines from the #9 position and fit better into the tactical plan for that game.
I hope this gives you an understanding of all of the planning and organization that goes into properly preparing for high-level world Cup games. Next week I will get more involved into the daily schedule for the trip and how I am amazed at what I still “don’t” know about this wonderful game of SOCCER!
Last week I discussed the overall philosophy of the Dutch soccer federation and national team staff and how it works from sunrise to sunset and beyond during world cup camp preparation. This article will hopefully provide you some insight into the daily detail and planning that goes into each and every game preparation.
Dutch National Team Program October 8 – October 17
- Monday, October 8 – Players arrive at the team Hotel called Huis ter Duin in Noordwijk. Players adjust to the days travel and get ready for meetings he following day.
- Tuesday, October 9 – Individual player meetings with technical staff in the morning, followed by a training session in the afternoon.
- Wednesday, October 10 – Morning meetings with each line (defenders + goalkeeper, midfield, forwards); followed by a team meeting to learn about the technical staff’s game plan for Friday’s game; followed by a closed training session 11v11 in the afternoon (video taped)- during the training the 2nd team acts as the upcoming opponent. During the session the team works on set pieces in We (offensive) and They (defensive).
- Thursday, October 11 – additional Individual & Line player meetings in the morning; followed by training in stadium at the same time as kickoff – 20:00 (8:00 p.m.).
- Friday, October 12 – morning rest followed by final pre-game team meeting; game at 20:00 vs. Andorra – De Kuip Stadium, Rotterdam, Netherlands. Result Holland 3 – Andorra 0, players are allowed to sleep at personal homes if within 60 kilometers.
- Saturday, October 13 – players report back to Hotel at 14:00 (2:00 p.m.); training begins at 18:00 (6:00 p.m.); players who played 75 minutes or more have a “recovery” session and for players who did not a train like a regular session.
- Sunday, October 14 – Morning begins with meeting with each line (defenders + goalkeeper, midfield, forwards); followed by team meeting about Game Plan for Tuesday’s game; followed by a closed training session 11v11 (video taped) with the 2nd team again acting as the upcoming opponent. Includes set pieces in “We” and “They” have the ball.
- Monday, October 15 – travel to Bucharest, arrive at 15:30. After checking into the team hotel the technical staff conducts additional individual & line player meetings; training in stadium at the same time as kickoff – 20:00.
- Tuesday, October 16 – Morning rest; followed by final pre-game meeting; game 20:00 vs. Romania –National Stadium, Bucharest, Romania. Result Holland 4 – Romania 1
- Wednesday, October 17 – players depart abck to pro club teams in various countries. Those who play in Holland flew to Amsterdam at 1:30pm and the players playing in other countries flew at various times.
The two games gave Holland 12pts and first place position in their group. The next game will be friendly games with Germany and Italy followed by the next qualifiers March 22 and March 26 in Holland against Estonia and Romania.
Louis van Gaal and his staff are in the process of building a new team and implementing the federation’s vision and a “Way of Playing”. The team is currently made of a mix of older, more experienced players and some younger less experienced players. Part of the older players responsibility it to set the professional example of how to train, prepare, and act as Dutch National team member. So far, they have managed to improve the way of playing each game and get results. This is not easy considering that they only have the team for 9-10 days every few months.
During the down time, the technical staff is busy communicating with the players, as well as the coaches of the player’s club teams. For example I flew from Bucharest to Holland on Wednesday, October 17. On Thursday, October 18 I visited Zeist and was a guest at the Trainer Coach II Course (Frans was the guest lecturer). While driving Frans was in touch with the Goalkeeper Coach of AS Roma, Swansea City and Ajax about the 3 keepers and their performance during the camp. He will use this information to help him rank his players before entering the next national camp.
All in all it was a great trip. In between the Dutch National Team I was able to visit Ajax Amsterdam Youth Academy 3 times, watch Youth and Amateur trainings at SV Hoofdorp and Ter Leede and see my good friend Serge vd Baan play in the highest amateur league game.
During these trips, the professional education I am exposed to is wonderful. As I compare our club to many clubs abroad, I continue to be impressed with how far BUSC has come, its vision, its dedicated staff, its way of playing, and its commitment to continue to strive forward and set the example in our country of how top youth soccer clubs should be operated.
I often have the chance to reflect back on my functions in youth soccer over the years and how lucky I am to do what I do and how lucky I am to be a part of such a wonderful club. I continue to strive to improve the development of soccer here in the USA. I am fortunate to be able to have friends like Frans Hoek and Serge van der Baan to take me in to their homes and allow me to see “Voetbal” from the inside and share those experiences with you all.
I take off in late November for another 10-day coaching education tour of Ajax and Barcelona. Each year take a group of coache’s abroad who strive to learn and be challenged and further their development as youth coaches in America. I hope that you have enjoyed reading about this trip and I look forward to seeing you soon on the pitch.
Yours in BUSC Soccer,
BUSC – U9-12 Director of Coaching