AMSTERDAM: Former Chelsea coach Andre Villas Boas today praised the quality of coaching, single purpose of vision and achievements of the Aspire Academy during the Star Chat session during the second day of the ASPIRE4SPORT and Global Summit on Football Performance & Science taking place in Amsterdam.
Villas Boas said, “What is so good about Aspire is that there’s a vision – there is a vision and a clear set-up. It’s aiming for 2022 and it has a great mix of such different people yet they all reflect the same vision.
"I have been to Aspire many times and I appreciate and value how so many different people and backgrounds strive to help build Qatar’s football and other sports.”
Villas Boas was comparing the work of the Aspire Academy to major European clubs youth development programmes. He said: “Apart from Bilbao, Ajax and Barcelona where there’s a clear vision with what you want to achieve in youth football – the other top clubs don’t have a vision.”
Villas Boas went on to point out that developing young talent and giving them the opportunity in the first team was increasingly difficult due to the pressures placed on managers.
The hour-long star chat with Villas Boas, was followed by a session with Edwin van der Sar who also praised the Aspire Academy for its work in developing young talent. The session was followed by a second coaching masterclass by Marcelo Bielsa, the former Chile and Argentina manager and concluded two days of networking and knowledge exchange by some of the world’s leading football clubs and coaches.