The point of working together is to share knowledge with C.F. Pachuca about how to train talent. Ajax will assist with training the coaches, so they get to exercise some influence over young player development at Pachuca CF. In November, two players - Julio Pérez and Fernando Álvarez - also took part in a two-week internship in Amsterdam.
At the start of the new calendar year, an Ajax delegation travelled to Mexico. The group consisted of Bart Logchies, Laura van Leeuwen, Roy Lagendijk and Jari de Kort. For a week, Pachuca and Ajax shared knowledge with each other. Also present was a small delegation from Mexican club Club León, part of the Pachuca Group.
At both Ajax and Pachuca - both reigning national champions, by the way - player development is key. It was nice to see the engaged and lively way the sessions were completed, there was a lot of enthusiasm.
Laura van Leeuwen, Manager International Academies: "The people at Pachuca are immensely motivated to take the next steps, of course there are a lot of benefits for us too. Strengthening our partners will have a positive impact for Ajax in the mid-long term. We really like each other's philosophy and outlook on football. Yet there are also certain differences. In this, we can learn from each other. And in areas where we are similar, we can strengthen each other."
During the week, there were four presentations on how Ajax operates. Then the translation to the field took place and insight was given through demonstration training on how to make this trainable. These sessions alternated theory and practice in the field. The Ajax delegation also watched the training sessions and matches of the youth teams and Pachuca's first team.
Bart Logchies, Head of Education, was pleased to see a nice mix of inquisitive and enthusiastic young people at Pachuca combined with good and experienced professionals. "We have been very well received at the club. In the cooperation, many things are already going very well. The past few days have allowed us to take new steps together into a deeper understanding of the relationship between a club's identity and its consequences on the pitch. The pitfall with football is often to deviate from the objective we set together for this visit. That's because several different roads lead to Rome. So here, then, there is no right or wrong, only different. The important aspect for Pachuca is that they plot that path well so we can take the next steps together again."
Cláudio Aguilera, Pachuca's Head of Youth Academy, was also highly satisfied. "The days were fantastic, both professionally and personally. We were able to see a 'glimpse' of what Ajax's world stands for and all the excellent work that is being done to train a large number of world-class players. In Ajax we see an inspiration and a reference to become one of the best clubs in the world and bring in and train elite players."