The Japanese dedicated to Vietnam’s youth football

VietNamNet Bridge – He has been working in Vietnam for only two summers but Masakuni Yamamoto - former head coach of Japan’s U23 football team – has fallen in love with Vietnam and he wants to contribute effort to develop Vietnam’s football.

Japanese coach, football, young football, summer camp, children

This is the second summer of Yamamoto in Vietnam, where hundreds of children aging from 6 to 10 are eagerly waiting for him in the annual summer football camp of Yamaha Motor Vietnam.

Born in 1958 in Shizuoka, Yamamoto was wrought in the difficult years of Japan as a result of the Second World War until it became a world power. In terms of a football player, he is also the witness of the miraculous process of development from a small country into the pride of Asian football.

Therefore, when he came to Vietnam, Yamamoto felt Vietnam’s similarities with Japan in the past, from social context to football. His cohesion with Vietnam has grown every day.

"I do not just want to teach the principles and simple football lessons," he said. "Through the summer camp, I also want to teach children the way of thinking, of being independent and transmit them the passion with the ball."

"In your country, soccer seems to start with the little kids of 11 years old upwards, But through the screening experience in a long process, I believe that kids of the ages of 6 to 10 are the most suitable to start to play football,” he said.

That is why he advised the organizers of the summer camp to select kids of this age for training, although the workload and the enthusiasm are much bigger.

He said that teaching children of 11 years and older is very easy because kids at that age have certain understanding and are obedient. Kids of 6-10 years old are very busy playing and forget so quickly so the teaching measures must be really special, which is a combination between discipline and coaxing. "The effort spent is 10 but sometimes I only wish they understand 3-4," he said.

Hanoi in recent days was "crazy" sunny, up to 39-40 degrees Celsius for some days but it did not hinder the plan and passion of Yamamoto. Together with colleagues and the organizers, the former coach of the famous FC in Japan - Jubilo Iwata - hustled to the point of registration, to the stadium... for reviewing and making comments.

"We are aware of the strictness and accuracy in the working style of the Japanese people but his enthusiasm has moved us and we feel that we have to try to complete our tasks to make the camp a good place for the children of Hanoi," said Mr. Nguyen Anh Sang - Director of VEBA, he organizer - said.

Indeed, if Vietnam needs someone to set the direction for youth soccer, Yamamoto is the right man. Because with his experience of instructing the Japanese young team at the 1997 World Youth Tournament finale and the 2004 Olympics and now the producer of the youth football program and commentator for NHK, Yamamoto has all required criteria.

The "2013 Yamaha Football Summer Camp" will be held from March 3 through July 13 at the stadium of the Hanoi University of Technology. After two days of selection (May 25 – 26), 50 candidates of each age group will participate in the training class with two sessions per week (2 hours per session) within 6 weeks, using Japanese lesson plan, with the participation of Japanese football experts and former players of the national football team of Vietnam such as Hong Son and Duc Thang.

Nam Nguyen

Japanese coach, football, young football, summer camp, children