For the first time in its history, AEFCA held its Symposium in Zagreb, the capital of Croatia. The Symposium that took place from 9th to 12th December 2014 was organised by Fredi Fiorentini, a Vice-President of AEFCA, in co-operation with a skilled and committed team including the entire leadership of HNS, the football association of Croatia.
In his opening address, our President Walter Gagg expressed his gratitude on behalf of AEFCA for the quality of organisation and the hospitality of the Croatian football association. Davor Suker, the President of the football association of Croatia, was proud to welcome AEFCA to Croatia for the third time. Further opening speeches were delivered by Romeo Jozak (a member of UEFA’s Youth and Amateur Football Committee), Tomislav Paskvalin (Assistant Minister of science, education and sport) and Zlatko Matesa (President of the National Olympic Committee of Croatia).
Well over 150 football coaches from nearly 60 countries, including numerous Croatian coaches from the host country’s top three leagues, followed the highly topical and outstanding lectures and practical demonstrations devoted to the Symposium’s overarching theme of “Top aspects of football coaching”.
Analyses of the World Cup in Brazil
The three working days were focused on analysing the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
Prestigious speakers highlighted the World Cup from various angles, all of them arriving at the same conclusion: Germany deserved to win the title!
On day two, Zorislav Srebric and Walter Gagg took the floor to pay tribute to Vlatko Markovic, a former member of the national squad, coach of the national team and long-standing President and Honorary President of the football association of Croatia, who had passed away in the autumn of 2013.
The practical demonstrations took place on GNK Dinamo Zagreb’s practice ground.
In addition, all Symposium participants had the opportunity of attending a very interesting high-score EL match between Dinamo Zagreb and Celtic Glasgow (4:3) on Thursday night.
The Symposium was concluded by AEFCA’s extraordinary General Assembly.
The agenda featured some significant items such as:
– Future co-operation with UEFA > consequences for AEFCA member associations.
– Negotiations with UEFA on a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
– Amendments to the Statutes.
– New head office at Ittigen near Bern > legal domicile to remain in Germany.
– New General Secretary > Philip J. Müller took over from Karlheinz Raviol on 1st September 2014.
A big thank-you is due to all member associations for their trust and active participation.
Wednesday, 10th December 2014, started off with an excellent speech on the training philosophy of the football association of Croatia, delivered by Romero Jozak.
Then followed a panel debate featuring the entire team of coaches of the Croatian national squad, headed by national coach Nico Kovac.
This was followed by an introduction to practical demonstrations by Dean Klafuric, the Under-15 head coach of Dinamo Zagreb, and Luka Pavlovic, the head coach of the Under-17 national squad of Croatia. PDF Video 1 Video 2 Video 3 Video 4 Video 5
On Thursday, 11th December 2014, the Symposium began with an interesting lecture from Mika Paatelainen, national coach of Finland and a member of FIFA’s Technical Study Group (TSG), analysing the World Cup. PDF
Bernd Stöber, a DFB sports instructor, analysed the future consequences from the point of view of the World Champion team. PDF
Then a very interesting speech on how to create a performance culture was delivered by Marijn Beuker of AZ Alkmar.
Following on, our co-opted ExCo member Mikhail Gershkovich from Russia presented the next host city of Sotchi (Russia), where the 36th AEFCA Symposium will be held in 2015. Video
On day three of the Symposium, Friday, 12th December 2014, Riccardo Guffanti of Udinese Calcio presented an interesting scouting scheme. PDF
The final item on the Symposium’s agenda was an animated and high-level panel debate featuring Stanko Poklepovic and Dusko Savic as well as IIija Loncarevic.
Video of the Symposium Link