You are completing the UEFA PRO – Level IV Coach Course. He ended his playing career early and started preparing his coaching career from an early age. How was that passage?
From an early age I became interested in the issues of the game and what it means to be a coach. Then, as a player, I learned from the various coaches I had. Names like Sérgio Conceição, FC Porto coach; João de Deus, assistant to Jorge Jesus; Paulo Alves, Varzim coach; Daniel Ramos, from Santa Clara; Nelo Vingada, who has a great career … I absorbed them all.
The first two levels of coach I took off while I was still playing. I took the third level last year and now the opportunity to take the level IV has arisen. I was fortunate and merited to enter and it is the continuity of the bet on my bureaucratic training, which is necessary for us to be coaches …
Merit, because it is a choice that depends on criteria, but also luck, because it is not every year that there are courses… is that it?
Of course. This has been talked about a lot. More courses are needed to handle all requests. Fortunately, within all that competition, I got access to this IV level, which gives me access to each and every competition. I am happy to be taking this step.
He started his coaching career at Académica…
Yes, as an assistant to Ivo Vieira. Then I also worked with Ricardo Soares, Quim Machado and Carlos Pinto.
In fact, before that, I also followed the work of the Académica junior team, with Miguel Carvalho, and then I followed Vítor Alves in the Football Section of the Academic. And I still watched Costinha's training, but seriously even only with Ivo Vieira.
… And do you intend to stay at Académica or do you already dream of other flights?
Académica has given me the opportunity to live closely with good coaches and I thank them for the opportunity to work with them and drink from their teachings. I learned something from everyone and I will be forever grateful.
Now as a head coach, did last season go well … even though it didn't end?
For me it was a fantastic season at all levels. It was my debut as a head coach. Ended without ending [risos] but it was very important for me. I see juniors as a training step, but where there is already a prospect of income…
It was at that age that he joined the main team of Académica … So today, at 33, he knows what it takes to “make the leap”.
Yes, it was … and that's what I try to pass on to you. I try that, within our game idea and the Academic's training model, they can grow to “feed” the under-23s and the main team.
It has happened with several juniors, this season, reaching the under-23s and even the main team. What is it like to work without knowing what's coming for this season?
Last year was very good, because we were able to give you good ideas, and give you a preparation so that you don't feel much difference at this level. Of course, the speed and strength that the game requires is different. But, in terms of mentality and knowledge of the game, they were prepared.
Last season we started training players with the main team, especially in the second half of the season.
In the first season as head coach we managed to place two players with a main contract – Rafinha, who signed now, and Afonso Peixoto who is training with the main team.
This year there are more players who are in the under-23s and who are likely to be able to stay in the under-23 squad, but that is something that has to go more through the direction.
You can read the full interview in the print and digital edition of DIÁRIO AS BEIRAS