As a member of the young generation of gooners, one name we were told as one of the great gooners when we were not born was Liam Brady. The Irish man is one of the greats of this club and his name would reverberate in the corridors of North London for many years to come; either for his awesome performance in the 1979 FA Cup final victory over Manchester United or the jaw dropping goal against Tottenham would remembered for years to come.
Just like Pat Rice, Liam returned to the club to head the Academy affairs and just how he was prolific as a player, he has been great as a coach. During his time, he has successfully nurtured stars that have made the club thick. Since 1996, he has made the Academy one of the best in the country and some of the players that have benefited from Liam Brady’s tutelage are: Ashley Cole, Fabrice Muamba, David Bentley, Cesc Fabregas, Sebastian Larsson, Nacer Barazite, Henri Lansbury and at present, Kieran Gibbs, Jack Wilshere, Szczesny, Emmanuel Frimpong and Serge Gnabry. It is also on record that in the last 100 players that have made their debut for the cub, 47 of them have been from the academy; that is a great record and thumbs up to the man popularly called ‘Chippy’ at the club.
When it was announced that Liam would be retiring, he promised to get a person of the same quality and they have done so, getting some one of the highest quality: Andries Jonker.
The Dutch coach is not only a well-respected man within the European coaching cycles. He managed local Dutch sides, FC Volendam, MVV Marstricht and Willem II between 1999 and 2009.
He moved to the `German power house, Bayern Munich as assistant coach to Louis Van Gaal in 2009 and became interim manager in 2011 when Van Gaal was sacked. He took over the Bayern B team in 2011 and left in 2012. From then till date, he has been the assistant coach of Wolfsburg.
Within that period, he has been in charge of the youth sections of the Dutch FA and has been the assistant coach at Barcelona.
This makes Andries the complete package, a Dutch, and has worked in Germany and Spain. Holland, Spain and Germany are famous for their awesome and excellent youth set ups and for us to have a man that has worked in all three countries with excellent track records in youth development.
It particularly excites me because we could see top foreign young talents make the trip to the Emirates and with the youth team already boosting great talents like Crowley and Zelalem, they would be better off with Andries Jonker around them.
This is a big thank to Liam Brady for cumulatively, 25 years glorious years in the club and a hearty welcome to Andries Jonker to the Emirates #COYG
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