ST PETERSBURG: World Cup-winner Joachim Low told his fellow national team coaches at a follow-up conference that teamwork was the key to Germany’s triumph in Brazil.
Germany beat Argentina 1-0 after extra-time in Maracana in the final but the outcome was not only down to Mario Gotze’s late goal, decisive though it was on the day.
Low talked about deeper issues during a FIFA/UEFA World Cup review conference for national coaches and technical directors in St Petersburg.
Speaking to Ion Lupescu, UEFA chief technical officer and a member of FIFA’s technical study group, Low said: “All the cogs must mesh together and every piece of the puzzle has to fit in order to have a complete picture at the end.”
Painting that picture meant that a coach should players with the right aptitude and attitude for a high-level competition “where a player’s character plays an important role.”
Low attributed a large portion of the triumph to youth coaches, without whose efforts such an achievement would not have been possible. He pointed to the foundation built in Germany through the performance centres launched by the DFB over the past 14 years, adding: “Youth coaches create world champions.”
TSG head Jean-Paul Brigger and members Gerard Houllier, Mixu Paatelainen and Gines Melendez reviewed technical and tactical trends while five of Europe’s World Cup coaches expanded on their work before and during the tournament.
Fantastic for France
France coach Didier Deschamps described it as a huge “adventure”, adding that “as a player or a coach, nothing beats participating at a World Cup.” He echoed one of Low’s themes in saying: “Team spirit is decisive.”
France were knocked out in the quarter-finals by Germany in Brazil, but Deschamps said that “nine of my players were under 25 at the World Cup. It was a great experience for them and they’ll take a lot from it and be stronger at the European Championship on home soil in two years.”
Fabio Capello had similar thoughts as his Russia side gained valuable know-how ahead of the World Cup to be staged in the country in 2018. Meanwhile, Vicente Del Bosque, coach of reigning European champions Spain, praised Germany as “a fantastic example of patience”, and said that “individual players can make the difference but what set Germany apart was that they won as a team”.
The second day of the conference focused on medical issues and refereeing.
Jiri Dvorak, FIFA’s chief medical officer, gave a comprehensive explanation of the procedure for drug testing both before and during the tournament while Massimo Busacca, head of the FIFA refereeing department, described the process of selecting and preparing officials for the World Cup.
Both highlighted the topic of Fair Play and the fact that there were 40pc injuries in Brazil than in South Africa in 2010.
Alex Horne, general secretary of the Football Association, explained the new structure of the support structure to the International Football Association Board and clarified how coaches could contribute proposals.
Further confederences are scheduled for Cairo (CAF) and Kuala Lumpur (AFC and Ocenia).
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