Bertrand Reuzeau : "Reflect, evolve, adapt"
Bertrand, you’re back to the position of director of the AS Monaco Academy this season, what are your objectives?
The goal is always the same. A young person who enters the academy must have a follow-up. He must go through these stages; the goal is to eventually reach the first team. For that we need time because the training is that as well; it is having patience, and time so that everything can be put in place. The idea is also to regain momentum in placing our young people in the various national sides.
Yet AS Monaco has always had young internationals in its ranks …
Yes, it’s a fact, but we must have more, not only U16 and U19, but also Les Espoirs, even the first team, when our young people arrive and perform at the professional level. When you see these sides, usually you have top players. That’s what we’re looking for, quality in quantity.
You have found a club in full evolution, especially in terms of its infrastructure. We imagine that you have a very positive view on the current projects: The Performance Center at La Turbie and Diagonale, which will host AS Monaco Academy beginning in a few months …
More than an evolution, I would speak of a development. And of course it’s very positive! With the completion of La Diagonale we will benefit from a superb tool, a modern structure that will allow us to embark on new course. And what to say about La Turbie shipyard, this magnificent Performance Center shows that the club is giving itself the means to succeed, as much at the pros as at the Academy.
This is also reflected by an increased focus on human resources for several seasons …
This is the plan in both an administrative and sporting sense. In addition to their competence, which has always been the mandate in terms of training, we can today rely on a more homogeneous and complete staff. AS Monaco continues to grow and will be very positive in the near future.
About the Academy staff, you have appointed Ludovic Giuly as David Bechkoura’s assistant with the National 2 team, reinforcing the “Generation 2004” presence with the young talents of the club …
I had initiated this movement two or three years ago by integrating in Gaël Givet and Sébastien Squillaci. Soon after Flavio Roma was appointed goalkeeping coach and Ludo arrived this season… Their career as top players and the experience they have acquired internationally allows them to deliver messages that only they can convey.
We imagine that their word have an impact on young players…
For me it is something very important, especially in such high level Academy as we have here in Monaco. We are talking here about developing players for the highest level and regarding this we mean the biggest international competitions. As long as they haven’t played at this level, doing so is difficult comprehend, but through the experiences of Ludo, Gaël, Sébastien and Flavio, through the messages they pass to the young people, we give them the keys to achieve this.
If AS Monaco is a reference in training for more than forty years, how do you plan to continue to stand out in this area in the face of increased competition from other clubs, which invest heavily in the training of young talent today?
Being a recognized Acamdemy for many decades is very important, it brings great credibility. Afterwards, we must not forget that everyone works, that the world evolves, that football evolves … We must also know how to grow, develop, reinvent ourselves. There is a real history of young talents at AS Monaco, world champions have been trained, which is not nothing, but to live in the past is dangerous.
How do you avoid this trap?
We must always think, evolve, adapt to avoid stagnation, because when we stagnate, we always end up regressing. The Academy is part of the AS Monaco’s DNA, the know-how that is the result of several decades of high quality work done by the club. There is no question of denying this capital, but we need to move forward. A real alchimy must be found, but it is also important not to “miss the boat” because that can create difficulties. When we see all the other French and foreign clubs that develop in this area, we remain focused and hang on to make sure that we don’t miss the boat.