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Primera División

The LaLiga methodology in simple terms

5:59 PM IST 11/04/22
La Liga Camps Cape Town 2022
Cape Town youngsters left a lasting impression on LaLiga coaches

The LaLiga Camps Cape Town gave some of the city’s brightest young stars exposure to world-class coaching, with LaLiga’s top coaches impressed with the high level of physical and technical ability of the city’s footballers.

LaLiga is a global, innovative, and socially responsible organisation that is a leader in the leisure and entertainment sector.

It is a private sports association composed of the 20 public limited sports companies (SADs) and clubs of LaLiga Santander and the 22 of LaLiga SmartBank, and is responsible for organising professional football competitions in Spain.

LaLiga is the football competition with the most social media followers in the world, with over 150 million followers across 17 platforms in 20 different languages. With its headquarters in Madrid (Spain), it is present in 41 countries through 11 offices and 44 delegates. The organisation carries out its social work through its Foundation and was the world's first professional football league to establish a league for intellectually challenged footballers: LaLiga Genuine Santander.

LaLiga Camps is one of the organisation's big commitments for 2022 within LaLiga Grassroots, the new initiative to promote grassroots football at a global level.

GOAL had the opportunity be part of the coaching sessions.

In the sessions led by LaLiga’s Uefa Pro-licenced coaches Saul Vazquez and Jose Angel García, we got the opportunity to learn about the LaLiga methodology, coming from local community football in Cape Town. And something we can take away from the LaLiga methodology, is in order to teach you must be open to learn. The methodology is based on creating a systematic way on development in football, that the way you teach a toddler is different to a teenager. The transition is from life skills to football.

During the session when speaking to the coaches Saul Vazquez and Jose Angel García, we was asked about their experience which has been unique in comparison to the other countries they work in.

“In terms of quality in all the countries, we see talented players and that is everywhere but, the training structure is very different, so, for example, the physical aspects, we can see good players even here in Cape Town, and our job and mission is to share with them different tips on how we train and organize our training sessions with the LaLiga methodology to help improve in the tactical part, so our mission is to provide structure,” said Jose Angel Garcia.

From a coaching side, I asked what their advice to our coaches is in order to improve development?

“Basically, what we advise coaches is to avoid the coaches from 20 years ago and try and involve them on the LaLiga methodology, which is a more global and holistic approach that focuses on the development of the player as an individual that just winning. And also, to provide them different tools and aspects that they can implement in reality,’’ said Saul Vazquez.

‘’The camps provide an opportunity for growth not just for individual players but for coaches also, it is a blend of cultures.’’

Asked about their experience of the South African culture, Jose Angel García said:

“People here in South Africa are too nice, way too nice, so the players and coaches are very polite people, but it is something that we can feel is real and from the heart, and we were treated so amazingly. No words to describe!”

“Everyone is open-minded, here and committed, good attitude every single and coach we have worked with for the week, it was amazing, especially the hospitality from the coaches/staff and the parents, always complimentary and asked us for tips on how to help their kids and tips on how to improve. It makes me want to come back to Cape Town.”

Vazquez and Garcia highlighted that even with not being able to see who the next Lionel Messi would be, the talent in South Africa is rich and the pathway to Europe is there.

For the city’s young footballers, it was a memorable week that will live long in the memory. And also for us, there was much to take back to the community, the experience was one we will not forget.