Asia’s top competitions – the AFC Asian Cup and the AFC Champions League – were discussed by the top coaches at the fourth AFC Elite Club Coaches’ Seminar which was held again in Shanghai, China PR during the last two days.
Gerard Houllier, the former France and Liverpool coach, joined the coaching talent which included former AFC Asian Cup winning coach Ange Postecoglou, who won the 2015 AFC Asian Cup with Australia and now coaches Yokohama F Marinos in Japan.
Last year’s beaten finalist AFC Champions League with Persepolis, Branko Ivankovic, (now with Saudi Arabia’s Al Ahli), Iceland’s Heimir Hallgrimsson who coaches Al-Arabi in Qatar and Gabriel Calderon, now Persepolis in the Islamic Republic of Iran, represented the West.
Another former Liverpool coach Rafael Benitez, who has just joined Dalian Yifang from Newcastle, was among a strong contingent of coaches from China PR – Luis Garcia (Beijing Renhe), Li Xiaopeng (Shandong Luneng Taishan), Bruno Genesio (Beijing Sinobo Guoan), Wang Baoshan (Henan Jianye) and ACL East zone semi-finalist Vitor Pereira with Shanghai SIPG.
Sydney FC’s Stephen Corica and former Melbourne Victory coach Kevin Muscat, an ever-present at all four forums, were joined by Korea’s Kim Do-hoon (Ulsan Hyundai) and Jose Morais (Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors) as well as Tomohiro Katanosaka from Japan’s Oita Trinita.
Sun Wen the former China PR women’s captain, coach of the local Shanghai women’s team, and now Chinese FA Vice President, was among the audience at an event opened by Gao Hongbo, a former Chinese national player and coach.
Mr Gao said: “The Chinese FA are delighted at the trust the AFC places in us every year by hosting this important event in Shanghai. It is important that the CFA and Chinese football learns from the best practice that is available in Asia.”
Andy Roxburgh, the AFC Technical Director, added: “We thank not only the CFA but all the clubs and coaches who have given their support for this vital event. In the last four years we have gathered the finest minds in not only Asian but also world football.
“People like Gerard Houllier, Fabio Capello, Sven Goran Eriksson and Rafa Benitez have freely shared their experience with some of the younger coaches and this can only be good for the development of the coaching talent and competitions in Asia.”