Soccer with Belgian Technology Grows at Plantation.
The renowned coach Michel Bruyninckx speaks to SoccerPlus about the experience of the Cogi method in the world and in Florida.
How did your method for training originate?
I’d have to go back in time around 16-17 years ago where we noticed that Belgian soccer was not developing in a good way. Because of that, one day our government decided to reorganize the sport. I had already been a coach of several professional clubs in Belgium at that time. I was contacted to help establish these new soccer academies.
What innovations emerged on this project?
Along with the scientists, we tried to change our programs to see how important the influence of the brain was in skill development. At that point, the study of the brain in sports was growing and I, having several years of experience already, was looking for a different way of organizing our training methods.
What results did you get?
In a very short time, the players who were trained developed in a remarkable way. In a period of 6-7 years, from a group of around 130 players made up of boys and girls, emerged 27 professional players of which several of them are playing at the highest level in the world.
How has been your experience with the AC Milan?
In the three years that I’ve been working for Milan, we’ve been able to completely restructure the training system and last year we had 38 international Italian players from our academy, and in this upcoming season we will have 10 players in the first team of Milan.
How did you come in contact with Plantation FC?
I’ve already began to work here in the States for a few years where I met Johnny Ramos (Director of the club). We’ve been working with Plantation now for the past 3 years and we’ve began seeing some very positive progress which we hope to continue seeing.
What impact do you believe your program can have on soccer in the U.S.?
We need to change the mindset within the country that soccer is only for leisure. If we could get the support to organize everything, I know that within 5 years the world would be surprised and we could have the U.S. in the top.
WHO IS HE
Name: Michel Bruyninckx
Family: Married with 3 children
1. Focuses on brain centered training using a “SenseBall” which is a soccer ball attached to a string which encourages players to develop specific skills, improves the use of their weak foot, and increases their reflexes along with reaction speed.
2. Is used in many high level soccer clubs and federations including the Belgian Football Association, AC Milan, RSC Anderlecht and FC Metz.
3. Used by 58 countries around the world.
4. Took part in helping to organize the opening ceremony of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
“Football is a game you play with your brain, your legs are just there to help you”