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Loosveld plots Netherlands revival

Published: Wednesday 23 February 2011, 11.38CET
The Netherlands have not qualified since 2005 and have a difficult group at home to Russia and Serbia, but coach Marcel Loosveld believes their "new generation" is giving them hope.
by Maciej Malczyk
Loosveld plots Netherlands revival
Marcel Loosveld is aiming to end the Netherlands' absence from a major tournament ©UEFA.com
 

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Published: Wednesday 23 February 2011, 11.38CET

Loosveld plots Netherlands revival

The Netherlands have not qualified since 2005 and have a difficult group at home to Russia and Serbia, but coach Marcel Loosveld believes their "new generation" is giving them hope.

The Netherlands, once a world force in the game, have not qualified for the UEFA European Futsal Championship since 2005 but three years later did make it to the continental Under-21 finals – and the coach that took them there, Marcel Loosveld, is about to embark on his first campaign in charge of the seniors. Loosveld's side host 2010 quarter-finalists Russia and Serbia, plus preliminary winners Finland, in a tough qualifying round Group 2, and the coach told UEFA.com: "We knew it would be a difficult group."

We always had a combination of outdoor and indoor players but when you see what the demands of the game are, they are quite different
Marcel Loosveld

UEFA.com: What do you think of your draw?

Marcel Loosveld: We knew it would be a difficult group but, on the other hand, it's quite a good challenge if we want to improve. We have to get results and we have to get past some very good countries – Russia and Serbia.

UEFA.com: Does playing at home give you an advantage?

Loosveld: I hope so. It's quite a good group, we will have good accommodation and I hope the people will come to the games and get behind our team.

UEFA.com: What is the current state of Dutch futsal?

Loosveld: It's not like the old days but we have fans and I expect people in Rotterdam to support us.

UEFA.com: You coached the U21s to the European finals in 2008; have many players come through from that squad?

Loosveld: Around five or six players have come into the A team. We have a lot of talent, I enjoy working with them and they want to improve, so I am very satisfied with that. They are a new generation and hopefully they are keen to get results for us.

UEFA.com: After 2010 qualifying you succeeded long-time coach Vic Hermans. What was his legacy?

Loosveld: He did a lot of good work for futsal in Holland and I am going to try to continue that and do my best to make futsal more popular in Holland and more professional.

UEFA.com: How professional is Dutch futsal?

Loosveld: It is increasing. Team and clubs now train three or four times a week and they have to specialise in futsal. That is what is needed for players to be physically at their best.

We always had a combination of outdoor and indoor players but when you see what the demands of the game are, they are quite different
. You have to specialise. What is necessary for a good futsal player? What is his profile? What does he need to do in the three or four minutes he is playing? A football player can run 60 or 80 metres, a futsal player needs only a maximum of 30 and how many times do they make that run? We have to investigate it.

UEFA.com: What is your aim for EURO 2012?

Loosveld: First, we have to make one step to qualify. Then we have to see what we can do in Croatia. When you hope, it is out of your hands. I have to work hard, the players have to work hard.

Last updated: 28/01/12 4.21CET

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