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Interview with Alfio Coco Basile about Educational Trip to Argentina

CoachesNet caught up with current Boca Juniors head coach and former Argentina World Cup head coach Alfio Coco Basile. Coach Basile discusses U.S. Soccer’s upcoming trip to Buenos Aires, his coaching philosophy and much more.

Coach Basile began his coaching career in 1975 after a long professional playing career. He led Argentina to the Round of 16 in the 1994 FIFA World Cup held in the United States. He returned to the national team after the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany where he led Argentina into qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. Basile is currently the head coach of Boca Juniors for a second time. With nearly fifty years of experience in the game Basile and his coaching staff look forward to sharing their knowledge with coaches from the United States.

Open to all coaches, CoachesNet attendees will head to Buenos Aires, Argentina on Thursday, Feb. 11, and return to the United States on Friday, Feb. 19. This unique trip will allow coaches the opportunity to study and learn from two very successful international clubs and specifically, the clubs training cycles and youth development philosophies.

• Schedule
• Application form

The first few days in Argentina will center on Casa Amarilla, home of the Boca Juniors training center, where coaches will participate in lectures and observe youth and professional training sessions with Coach Basile and his staff. Access will allow coaches an insider’s perspective into one of the most successful clubs in the world. Coaches will also attend two professional matches and take part in lectures led by the Argentina Football Federation (AFA).

Upon departing Buenos Aires, coaches will head south to the city of La Plata where they will spend the next four days with professional club Estudiantes. During their stay with Estudiantes, coaches will focus on how the club’s teams prepare, train and play from their youth to professionals sides. Coaches will attend training sessions, take part in lectures and interact with their coaching staffs. This opportunity will give coaches a unique view on how Estudiantes, a club known for developing players, prepares and trains its players.

Registration includes a certificate of attendance from U.S. Soccer, NIKE traveling gear, meals, accommodation, two professional games and a full-time bilingual guide. A group flight option is also available from Miami, Fla.

To register, visit
Questions can be directed to Space is still available.

CoachesNet: This is your second coaching stint with professional club Boca Juniors. What makes this club one of the best and most recognized soccer clubs in the world? 

Alfio Coco Basile: “[It is] all of the accomplishments they have acquired throughout their history and the great passion of their fans. It is an indescribable world; you have to live in it to understand it.”

CN: What can a coach expect from attending the educational trip to Buenos Aires, Argentina?

ACB: “Coaches can gain experience from a country that has produced multiple champions and that has a great tradition in the forming of players. They can get in touch with the passion and discover a different way of working, not a better one, but definitely different. I believe I can share my experiences as a player and as a coach. If you add player and coach years, I have almost 50 years in soccer.”

CN: Can you share with us what you and your coaching staff are working on this week in practice?

ACB: “Possession. We are working on speed of play and to attack the opposite goal in an organized efficient way. It is the common denominator of our weeks during the season, together with dead balls and assigning defensive responsibilities depending on the opponent.”

CN: When selecting a team, what are the characteristics you look for?

ACB: “Above all I look for the Argentinean player characteristics; ball on the ground, good decision making, sharp in one and two touches, creative, smart, above all disciplined and players that explode their talent going forward always looking to attack aggressively.”

CN: What allows Argentina to keep producing world-class football players?

ACB: “The amount of young kids that play the sport, it is the greatest past time in our country. Later on when they get to the clubs, they help them become better soccer players and better individuals.”

CN: In general, what do youth players need to do to succeed at the highest level?

ACB: “Above all, discipline, without ever sacrificing their individual talent.”

CN: What are some qualities you think make up a top-level coach?

ACB: “Hard work, information and most importantly human relations (leadership and group management).”

CN: What are some strengths and weaknesses of American players?

ACB: “Strengths: athleticism and great disposition to learn and get better. They have significantly evolved in the last 15 years. Weaknesses: not enough malice or savvy to play the game. They also have to learn how not to be in such a rush to go forward. They need to learn how to defend themselves by holding on to the ball.

“It will be a pleasure to share with coaches who are willing to give me some of their time.”

To Register

Download the application form and either fax (312-808-9708) or mail to:
U.S. Soccer
Attn: CoachesNet
1801 S. Prairie Ave
Chicago, IL 60616

We hope you will be joining us next year in Argentina!

Questions should be directed to