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In spite of Arctic temperatures St Louis Scott Gallagher Illinois paid another successful visit to the Feyenoord Academy last week. Our partner club from the USA brought over two teams, staff and parents to get immersed in Dutch football culture. The Americans played their Feyenoord Academy counterparts, supported Feyenoord's first team against Willem II, were coached by Feyenoord coaches and made several excursions. At the end of the trip the two clubs jointly announced a two-year extension to the partnership.
St Louis Scott Gallagher are striving to become the best youth development club in the USA. It has already produced several US youth international players. Over the last few years Feyenoord and St Louis Scott Gallagher have worked in an educational partnership to bridge the gap in coaching and player development. Each year SLSG coaches make the trip to Rotterdam to gain inside knowledge in technical areas as well as overall operations of the Feyenoord Academy, while talented American players get a chance to prove themselves against Dutch peers and gain valuable experience. The plan is to continue providing those opportunities as both clubs focus on broader cooperation in order to impact development of both boys’ and girls’ players and coaches.
For Feyenoord the partnership is a way to keep its presence known in the up and coming American market by sharing what Feyenoord Academy does the best: the education of staff and development of players. The cooperation also provides Feyenoord with valuable knowledge of talented American youth players.
According to the St. Louis based clubs’ Academy Director, Blake Decker, ‘The time spent and insights acquired through our interactions with Feyenoord, both internationally and domestically, have been invaluable to the development of our club, players and staff. Our initial goal in securing an international partnership was to find a club with whom we could develop a long-term technical relationship that would provide us with opportunities for continual growth as we evolved from a youth club to a professional soccer organization. In Feyenoord, and its’ staff, we found that partner and we are excited for the next phase of our partnership.’
‘We are glad to see St Louis Scott Gallagher is committed to continuously improving on all terrains’, says Gido Vader, manager of international relations. ‘They have proven themselves a very loyal partner. Through our cooperation hundreds of Americans have visited us here in Rotterdam by now, getting to know and love Feyenoord. It has been a great partnership so far and we look forward to an even better future.’