So we have a successor to Liam Brady as Dutch youth development expert Andries Jonker was yesterday confirmed as the new head of the Club’s Academy from 1st July.
So just who is our new signing?
Well, he’s 51 years old and is currently the Assistant Manager of VFL Wolfsburg.
Prior to his current position, he spent seven years developing and implementing youth coaching reforms for the KNVB (Dutch FA), in Haarlem and Amsterdam, and two seasons working as a senior coach in the youth setup of the Dutch Federation. This included managing the U15 and U21 national teams.
Jonker also served as Technical Manager for the KNVB for six months before becoming Assistant Coach to Louis van Gaal at FC Barcelona and FC Bayern Munich where he later had a spell as interim Head Coach. He was appointed Assistant Manager at VFL Wolfsburg in 2012.
Arsenal Chief Executive Ivan Gazidis said:
Youth development is a key part of our philosophy at Arsenal and I am delighted that Andries is joining us. He has an outstanding track record in developing and identifying young players and creating systems to bring the best out of them. I know he will build on the tremendous work which has been done by Liam and his team over many years.
Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger added:
I am very pleased that Andries is joining us. He has a big reputation in the game and was a key part of the team which developed the structures which are now producing such strong young players in Holland. I look forward to working with him. I would also like to thank Liam for his work which has been outstanding over many years.
Yes ok, caught red handed, I copied that off of the official website and that’s because I hadn’t heard of our new man before he was mentioned as being Liam Brady’s successor.
Seems to me we have got the best of both worlds for our Academy, a man brought up in Holland who will clearly know all about the way the great Dutch footballers have played and of course, he’s spent a lot of his time around the German clubs which has to be a good thing too. Spending time with Barcelona has to be a plus too so it’s all good.
The Academy will surely only benefit from this appointment, maybe Arsene too will as you can always teach an old dog new tricks….
Hopefully he’ll have enough knowledge about the up and coming young players in Europe and we nab one or two. Along with the young better players across England of course, we don’t want to have too many young, exciting overseas gems do we?
That’s your lot for another day…..