Ariel Holan is a special technical director at the MX League: Passionate about technology, he was a player and coach in field hockey, and he has come to revolutionize football with his way of training, although a last Atlas penalty has taken the championship from him and the León team.
In less than six months, he managed to lead the León back to a Liga MX final and was a hair away to be champion in his first tournament run in Mexico.
But who is Ariel Holan, the 61-year-old Argentine coach, who impressed León and convinced him to sign him as a replacement for Ignacio Ambriz?
Passionate about technology
The first thing that catches Holan’s attention is that, despite his age, he is passionate about technology to help you improve performance in sport.
He uses two softwares to analyze the players of the teams He already manages the rivals he faces every week.
Holan technical assistants they insert all the player’s data into the program that the squad has, and mainly those who are going to sign:
-How is it in the attack
-How is it in defense
-How he plays standing ball
-How he plays at home
-How he plays visiting
“What this software does is accumulate information that is saved and it is easy to require ”, explains Holand in a conference at the National University of Avellaneda. “When you select all this kind of data, he is getting an average from Carlitos, if he meets the conditions of the game system, at least on video ”.
Afterwards, Holan consults coaches who have had the footballer in the past to find out how he trains, if he is emotionally stable or how he is with his family.
Ariel Holan describes the software as a tool that reduces errors.
“They do not guarantee anything but help reduce the margin of error “, he claims.
In the teams that Holan directs, footballers are classified into three types: the amateurs that the club develops, to those who the team buys -on averages between 2 and 5 million dollars, and the seasoned veterans They charge more money but come free.
Holan rates footballers in its software at various levels:
-Level league rest of the American continent
-Local league level
Before facing a team, they analyze it, divide the information, and all the data is inserted into the software and delivered to their players.
For example, how is the opponent in attack, defense or stopped ball.
“Our defenders have the indicators of the forwards of rival teams “says Holan.
This work methodology was developed and used before in field hockey, where he was a coach and won a medal at the Pan American Games.
Holan started out in field hockey, basically because he is a frustrated footballer.
“I played hockey because I was a frustrated footballer. In my house they told me: ‘you’re going to starve’ “, said the strategist for TUDN.
After playing hockey, Holan continued as a coach and was part of the Uruguay women’s field hockey team, which won the bronze medal at the 2003 Pan American Games, that took place in Santo Domingo, in the Dominican Republic.
There are even videos of Ariel on YouTube giving directions to the players on board a bus, with a lap top, where he shreds the rival. This at the beginning of the century.
But his passion was always soccer. And he never stopped chasing his dream.
After field hockey, it was assistant coach of Argentine teams from 2003 to 2015, including Matías Almeyda’s River Plate. He started in soccer as an assistant and he analyzed rivals on video to counter them.
In 2015 he began his career as a coach. And the working method has already made him a champion in Chile with the Catholic University; in the Copa Sudamericana and Copa Copa Suruga Bank with Independiente, from Argentina; and that’s it lifted a trophy with the Lion in the League Cup.
Holan and his coaching staff -more than 10- they use drones in their teams ‘training sessions to evaluate the players’ work, have a better global angle of his movements, something that was criticized when he began his career as a soccer coach.
The information gleaned from the videos by the assistants of Holan and It is shared with the footballers to explain their faults and try to correct them.
“It is a tool to see after a training session if what you wanted came out, and if it didn’t, you have the recording to show the team what you want them to correct, with a panorama in which it is much clearer for them”, Sebastián Maz, Holan’s assistant with León, explained at Half-time.
A student of data
El León belongs to the Pachuca Group that owns several soccer clubs, one of them, Evertón in Chile. That was where Jesús Martínez Munguía, president of León, met him.
The keys that convinced the Lion to sign were:
-What is it a student of soccer. He is one of those people who live and breathe soccer 24 hours a day, every day.
-Have a offensive play style.
–Analyze every detail of the rival to know how to stop and counter it.
“There are much more pros, I have seen that he received criticism for not playing soccer, but He is passionate and really knows how to lead and how to take advantage of other technologies and boy does it work. We are very happy with the teacher, ”Jesús Martínez told Record.
Leon’s bet on Holan has worked for him, at the moment. He was third in the regular season, in the league he beat Puebla, which was the surprise, and Tigres, who was the favorite, and today he faces Atlas in the final. It is 90 minutes from demonstrate once again that technology and football, together, are a guarantee of success.
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Ariel Holan: the hockey coach who is almost a champion of Mexican soccer … but the Atlas arrived