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Adelaide United embarks on landmark trip to PSV Eindhoven: A partnership unfolds

Adelaide United recently embarked on a transformative journey to PSV Eindhoven, marking their inaugural trip following a long-term partnership between the two clubs

The trip promised a blend of training, matches, and immersive experiences, laying the foundation for what promises to be a fruitful collaboration.

The itinerary, spanning several days, offered the Adelaide United cohort of players, coaches and officials the opportunity to engage with PSV Academy, renowned for nurturing some of the brightest talents in European football.

The trip also produced an opportunity to meet incoming Adelaide United Technical Director, Ernest Faber, who has been at the Dutch giants as Head of Youth Academy since 2018. 

Led by Head of Football, Marius Zanin, and Head of Youth Football, Airton Andrioli, the Reds contingent dove into a whirlwind of activities, each designed to deepen their understanding of PSV’s footballing philosophy while fostering invaluable connections.

Unveiling the Itinerary: A Glimpse into Adelaide’s PSV Experience

The journey commenced on Thursday, 9 May 2024, with Adelaide United’s arrival at the PSV Campus de Herdgang, which would be the start of various training sessions, matches, and presentations, along with an insight into the PSV way of life.

One of the standout moments of the trip was the participation of four Adelaide United players – Bailey O’Neil, Amlani Tatu, Feyzo Kasumovic, and Malual Nichola – in training with the PSV Academy. 

Not only did the player’s train alongside some of Europe’s most promising young talents, but they also had the honour of donning the PSV colours in a game for the Academy, a testament to the calibre of players Adelaide United possesses.

Adelaide United promising young Defender, Bailey O’Neil, gives his thanks to the Club for giving him an incredible opportunity. 

“I’m very grateful that Adelaide United gave me this opportunity to come over to the Netherlands and experience training with the PSV Academy,” O’Neil said. 

“I know a lot of people my age will never get this opportunity in their lifetime, so I’m very grateful for being given this opportunity,” 

The schedule, balancing intensive training sessions with immersive experiences, including stadium tours, skill box training, and the opportunity to witness various youth matches, showcasing the breadth of talent within the PSV setup. 

Additionally, the travelling party had the privilege of attending professional games in both the Eredivisie and Eerste Divisie. 

They travelled to The Hague to watch Jong PSV take on ADO Den Haag, which was followed by another away trip where Fortuna Sittard played host to PSV, and the last match was on the final day of the Eredivisie that saw PSV victorious over RKC Waalwijk in the Philips Stadion. 

All these matches provided valuable insights into the Dutch footballing landscape.

A Partnership in Action: Quotes from the Leaders

Head of Football, Marius Zanin, expressed his enthusiasm about the partnership, stating, 

“This trip marks the beginning of an exciting collaboration between Adelaide United and PSV Eindhoven,” said Zanin.

“The opportunity for our players to train with the PSV Academy is invaluable, and we look forward to implementing the lessons learned into our own development programs.

“I believe the partnership will benefit both sides on multiple facets both on and off the field.

“We always have to think that football is number one here but I think the Holland market is very interesting for us as the Australian market is interesting for PSV. 

“I think from a player’s point of view it is great we’ve had this experience here this last couple of weeks. 

“We’ve been able to bring a few players over to experience life within PSV, good young players that are exposed, but also have the opportunity to see what it takes to take it to the next level.

“We want our players to succeed both for us but also on a national level — and environments like this will enable them to hopefully reach their potential.” 

Echoing Zanin’s sentiments, Head of Youth Football, Airton Andrioli, emphasised the significance of the trip in nurturing young talent.  

“I think the players now have a sort of a more visually tangible way of understanding the message that we try to preach to them or tell them about becoming a professional and being a professional from a young age,” said Andrioli. 

“They can come here and see what it looks like in the real world and that will be extremely beneficial to them.

“And I think in the conversations that we have had with the boys, I can really see the difference between how those players go around their business and how they see football, how they see the progression.”

Looking Ahead: A New Chapter Begins

As Adelaide United bids farewell to Eindhoven, the memories forged and lessons learned during their stay will undoubtedly leave an indelible mark on the Club’s journey. 

Armed with newfound insights and a strengthened partnership, Adelaide United is poised to embark on a new chapter, one that holds the promise of growth, success, and a shared passion to nurture young talent and generate success on and off the field.