Futsal coaching legend gives PHL football a boost

The CPU Golden Lions (white shirts) tangle with Janiuay booters on the first day of the Allianz National Youth Futsal Invitational leg at the Central Philippine University covered gym, May 2, 2019. (F. A. Angelo)

THE Philippine Football Federation (PFF) together with the Henry V. Moran Foundation (Moran Foundation) aims to give Philippine futsal a boost by bringing to the Philippines Dutch futsal coach Victor Jacobus Hermans in an effort to help develop a national program and plan for futsal in the country

“Futsal is the world’s fastest growing indoor sport, derived from the world’s most popular sport football. Over the years we have seen how futsal has grown in the Philippines in terms of participation because of its ability to engage communities with the abundance of basketball courts and indoor gyms in our country. We are therefore honored to have one of the world’s top experts in futsal to help us plan, develop and execute a system wherein we can provide opportunities for all Filipinos to play this sport and complement our development efforts in football.” said Mariano Araneta Jr., PFF president.

Futsal is a variant of football that is played mainly indoor 5-aside. The sport was founded in Uruguay in the 1930s and is as an excellent format for developing more technical players and for grassroots in engaging more players and communities who might not have access or the means to participate in football.

Some of the world’s best football players like Neymar, Ronaldinho, Kaka, sta began their journeys in futsal, and credit the game for the development of as footballers.

Hermans, who is one of the pioneers of the modern game of futsal as well as one of the sport’s top coaches decided to come to the Philippines after seeing the potential Filipinos have for futsal.

Hermans, who is a futsal instructor for FIFA, UEFA and the Asian Football Confederation also served as the mentor of the national futsal teams of the Netherlands, Iran Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Hong Kong, and Malta

Victor Jacobus Hermans

“My first impression of Philippine futsal is the same as before when I played against the Philippines as the national team coach of Thailand. In my short time here, I have observed some youth tournaments organized by the PFF and the activities organized in public schools by the Moran Foundation. I can already see a lot of talents and many areas of potential like the presence of indoor halls and basketball courts in every community. But to realize this potential we need more awareness, education, a structure, teamwork with various stakeholders, and a plan for development. I am confident if we establish a good and solid structure from the base, we can build and realize the potential I see in the Philippines,” he said.

Hermans observed the Allianz National Youth Futsal Invitational legs and the Palarong Pambansa futsal games, scout youth players, and conduct coaching courses with youth and grassroots futsal coaches.

He also visited Davao, Iloilo, Cebu, Bacolod, and Metro Manila to meet with stakeholders of the sport from different regions in the Philippines.

Towards the end of his stay, he will also be conducting the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Futsal Level 2 (May 20-26) and AFC Futsal Level 1 (June 24-29) Futsal courses to share his knowledge and help the country establish a core of local Filipino futsal coaches and instructors who will carry out the PFF’s new plan and vision for futsal development.

“We are thrilled to have one of the fathers of the modern game of futsal in the Philippines to help us develop futsal from the grassroots and youth. We are not bringing Coach Vic here to coach a national team, but we are partnering with him to work with us and the PFF in laying out a pathway to develop for this sport. Vic has a proven track record, and with his vast expertise in Asia and his knowledge of Asian cultures, we want him to focus on helping the Philippines establish a foundation where we can use the sport to give millions of Filipino children the chance and the opportunity to succeed in life,” said Danny Moran, Chairman of the Moran Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the sport of futsal to public schools, charities, and communities across the country.