AVELLANEDA, Argentina — Partially obscured by a rusting rack of weights, the back wall of the gym at Racing Club’s youth academy has been painted dark blue and daubed with symbols.
On one side are four bright, color-coded dots; on the other, four numbered yellow circles. Rising from the floor are two miniature depictions of goal posts, no more than a foot wide; fixed at the top are two hooks, looped with string, a ball hanging from each.
Diego Huerta, an assistant at the academy and one of the club’s scouts, walks past with barely a glance, stopping only when he registers the confused looks. At Borussia Dortmund, he explains, the academy boasts a Footbonaut, a futuristic piece of training equipment designed to improve speed of thought and skill of execution. Standing inside a cage, Dortmund players receive a ball every few seconds. Simultaneously, a box on one of the four walls will light up. The player must swivel, fire the ball into the correct box, and then be ready to receive the next pass.
Dortmund is one of just two clubs in the world to have one; T.S.G. Hoffenheim is the other. Coaches believe that two or three minutes inside the Footbonaut can have the same impact as multiple training sessions, but it does not come cheap: Each machine costs from million to million, and requires updates to the software that runs it.
That price tag is way beyond Racing’s means. It is working with a local software developer on a pared-down, budget-friendly equivalent, but in the meantime, its answer, adapted for the realities and restrictions of the game in Argentina, includes the dots and circles painted on the weight room walls, the soccer balls hanging from strings. “This,” Huerta said, “is our version.”
The same ethos is struck through everything Racing does. Like all of Argentina’s traditional powerhouses, this is a club conscious of its history. The walls of the cafe at the academy are lined with images of former stars; half of the room is given over to an extensive timeline of the club’s achievements, from the swath of championships it claimed in the early part of the 20th century to its first Copa Libertadores success, in 1967.
That year, it became the first Argentine team to win the Intercontinental Cup, beating the European champion, Glasgow Celtic, over two bad-tempered legs. It has styled itself “el primer grande” — the first of Argentina’s great clubs — ever since.
Unusually, though, Racing is not beholden to that history, or content to be swaddled by its traditions. Argentina’s biggest clubs are run as social institutions, in which members vote for presidents every few years. The system is cherished as a bulwark against corporate creep, a way of ensuring that clubs’ identities are not leveraged to the highest bidder, but it can make them cumbersome and conservative, structurally resistant to change.
In that context, Racing stands out as a bastion of innovation. It is not just the homemade Footbonaut. It is the support available to the 55 boys who live at the club’s academy, far in advance of what most of their peers in Argentina would be offered, ranging from social workers and psychologists to academic tutors. It is the approach to player development, centering less on results and more on individual progress. Most of all, it is the work done in a small, subterranean office in the parking lot of the club’s stadium.
Here, Javier Weiner’s team of four scouts, including Huerta, sits at a bank of four desks, each one dominated by an iMac. The scouts scour games from Argentina’s lower leagues and a handful of South American countries on Wyscout, a content platform that streams action from across the world.
Each scout has an area to cover: Weiner takes Argentina and Colombia; Huerta monitors youth soccer and Venezuela.
Using the analytics service InStat, they compile dossiers on potential acquisitions, drawing together not just raw performance data but also players’ psychological, emotional and medical backgrounds. They track information from journalists on social media.
Most clubs of this scale in Europe, North America and Asia would see this work as standard now; in Argentina, it is all but revolutionary. “Most of the time, it is the head coach who recruits players, or the president, with the help of a few agents,” Huerta said. “There is no process: Everything changes constantly. And there are times when crucial decisions are made by someone who does not know anything about football.”
Racing, however, is determined to be “another type of club,” Weiner said. “We have to be creative,” he said. “We have to have a network that means we can get players before bigger clubs because financially we cannot compete with River Plate and Boca Juniors.”
The mastermind behind that plan for the future is one of the towering figures from Racing’s past. His image hangs from not one poster, but two, in the hall at the academy.
Diego Milito won two Argentine titles with Racing as a player, though most of his success came in Italy, where he was the attacking spearhead of José Mourinho’s treble-winning Inter Milan team. He returned to his boyhood team to see out his career in 2014. After retiring, in 2016, he was appointed Racing’s technical secretary, an equivalent to a director of football role.
Milito’s goal, Huerta said, was to “make Racing a champion again.” He is on the cusp of doing just that: Racing sits atop Argentina’s Superleague, a first title since 2014 inching ever closer. Its journey, though, directed by Milito, has been unorthodox.
“All the time Milito was in Europe, he saw how they were working, and he tried to adapt some of the ideas he found,” Huerta said.
Scouting was central to that. One of Milito’s first appointments was Weiner, who had been working with his father, Gabriel, on his “mobile technical unit”: a freelance scouting operation, effectively, that carried out project work for European and North American clubs. “We had been commissioned by Bayer Leverkusen, Udinese, Chicago Fire and a few others,” Javier Weiner said. A Racing fan, he leapt at the chance to sign up permanently when Milito asked.
Huerta’s route was a little different. A journalist by training, he spent four years working at Clarín, Argentina’s biggest news outlet, before starting to work with Martí Perarnau, once an Olympian for Spain and now a prolific journalist, author and the biographer of Pep Guardiola.
Huerta’s connection with Perarnau allowed him to visit several of Europe’s most progressive clubs. “I talked to people from Dortmund, Sevilla, Barcelona, Olympique Marseille,” he said. “I went to watch Zinedine Zidane while he was coaching Real Madrid’s reserve team. I had read ‘Soccernomics’ and ‘Moneyball.’ I had some ideas on how to run a club.”
He started doing video analysis and statistics work for Racing. When Milito arrived, he spotted Huerta’s gift for languages and recruited him into his inner circle. He now acts as a bridge between the scouting operation, the first team and the academy. “We did not have a structure before,” Huerta said. “Now we have a clear vision of what we want the club to be.”
The best parallel he can find is with one of those clubs he visited on his tour of Europe: Sevilla, a team that has built sustained modern success among much bigger rivals by recruiting well and selling better.
Racing has always had a reputation for youth development — the club is known, in Argentina, as La Academia — and that remains central to Milito’s plan. In his office at the academy, Huerta keeps a map of all the areas of Argentina where he has searched for talent.
There has never been any shortage of that, of course — “Switzerland knows how to make watches, and we make players,” the grizzled academy director Miguel Gomis said — but there is a belief, too, that it can be done more effectively, more reliably.
“We do not see the mistakes we make because no matter how badly we do things, players come through,” Gomis said.
There is a focus, now, not on “training talent” — the endless slew of creative, attacking players that Argentina is famous for — but on “positions of concept,” the more defensive, more cerebral roles. “We want to create the players that Racing needs,” said Claudio Úbeda, a coach at the academy. “But also the players that Europe wants.”
Racing is looking further afield than any of its rivals for that raw material. It is, Huerta said, often the only Argentine team that sends scouts to international youth tournaments. It has started to recruit players from Colombia, Peru and Venezuela.
Just as significant, it has “formalized,” as Weiner put it, the other end of the process. “I remember seeing a couple of tall, blond guys in the crowd at one game,” Weiner said. “It turned out they were scouts from F.C. Copenhagen, in Denmark. There was nobody to help them get tickets to watch a player, so they just ended up behind the goal. We have changed that now.”
So new that there remains some suspicion about it. The concept of scouting remains alien to some. Huerta is regularly asked by colleagues from other teams why he is bothering to watch lower tier games or follow players from Venezuela. There are skeptics within the club, too; Milito’s revolution has not been entirely peaceful. Change does not come easily, even with such a potent figurehead. The team he has built, though, has the courage of its convictions. Racing can see the future; or its own, homemade version of it, at least.B:
2017年118挂牌平特新图【第】【二】【天】【一】【大】【早】，【周】【继】【国】【非】【常】【意】【外】【的】【发】【现】【周】【家】【几】【个】【人】【都】【起】【了】【大】【早】【准】【备】【送】【他】【走】，【这】【可】【是】【前】【所】【未】【有】【的】【待】【遇】【啊】，【让】【他】【有】【些】【受】【宠】【若】【惊】。 【要】【知】【道】【之】【前】【他】【离】【家】【的】【时】【候】，【也】【只】【有】【周】【耀】【森】【这】【个】【当】【爹】【的】【会】【早】【早】【起】【来】【嘱】【咐】【他】【几】【句】【的】。 “【你】【几】【个】【走】，【我】【特】【意】【给】【你】【煮】【了】【几】【个】【鸡】【蛋】，【你】【带】【着】【路】【上】【吃】。”【李】【如】【翠】【拿】【了】【两】【个】【鸡】【蛋】【塞】【到】【了】【他】【的】【衣】【兜】【里】，
“【该】【死】！”【凤】【轻】【云】【低】【咒】【一】【声】，【拉】【着】【夜】【伽】【蓝】【便】【往】【前】【狂】【奔】。 【区】【区】【几】【棵】【大】【树】【根】【本】【阻】【不】【住】【龙】【炎】【巨】【兽】【几】【秒】【时】【间】，【龙】【炎】【巨】【兽】【大】【脚】【一】【踩】，【便】【将】【那】【几】【棵】【大】【树】【拦】【腰】【踩】【成】【了】【齑】【粉】，【再】【次】【咆】【哮】【着】【追】【了】【上】【来】。 【跑】【在】【前】【面】【的】【萧】【可】【忽】【地】【回】【头】【看】【了】【一】【眼】，【吃】【惊】【道】：“【咦】，【那】【不】【是】【凤】【轻】【云】【吗】？【她】【怎】【么】【会】【跟】【青】【弈】【在】【一】【起】？【还】【有】【旁】【边】【那】【个】【少】【年】，【好】【像】【是】【夜】
【左】【边】【离】【开】，【沉】【浸】【在】【自】【己】【的】【思】【绪】【里】，【外】【面】【所】【有】【的】【一】【切】【活】【动】【全】【部】【取】【消】，**【务】【也】【不】【接】【了】。 【其】【他】【人】【的】【状】【况】【也】【都】【差】【不】【多】。 【楚】【星】【光】【不】【知】【道】【什】【么】【时】【候】【出】【现】【在】【他】【身】【后】。 “【叶】【栖】【的】【责】【任】【就】【是】【如】【此】，【你】【早】【就】【该】【做】【好】【这】【种】【心】【理】【准】【备】。” 【像】【他】【们】【这】【种】【搞】【科】【研】【的】，【每】【天】【做】【无】【数】【实】【验】，【而】【且】【这】【些】【实】【验】【都】【是】【无】【比】【高】【难】【度】【的】，【一】【旦】【某】【个】【步】2017年118挂牌平特新图“【走】【啦】。”【霜】【儿】【很】【是】【豪】【爽】【的】【轻】【拍】【白】【旭】【的】【肩】【头】，【于】【她】【而】【言】，【白】【旭】【早】【就】【是】【她】【的】【好】【友】【了】，【所】【以】【别】【人】【不】【敢】【对】【白】【旭】【做】【的】【事】，【她】【敢】【做】。 “【我】【总】【觉】【得】，【自】【从】【认】【识】【琴】【儿】【以】【后】，【我】【这】【女】【生】【勿】【进】【的】【谣】【言】【就】【破】【了】。”【他】【想】【了】【想】，【慕】【容】【烟】【琴】【可】【以】【靠】【近】【他】，【霜】【儿】【可】【以】，【独】【孤】【清】【漪】【也】【能】，【还】【有】【沐】【夫】【人】，【灵】【儿】，【这】【些】【都】【是】【女】【人】。 “【你】【也】【说】，【那】【是】【谣】
“【哈】【哈】，【楚】【老】【头】，【你】【真】【是】【越】【活】【越】【回】【去】【了】。【前】【些】【日】【子】【听】【说】【你】【突】【破】【凝】【元】【境】【二】【重】，【我】【还】【想】【着】，【哪】【天】【来】【向】【你】【讨】【教】【讨】【教】，【却】【没】【想】【到】，【竟】【然】【如】【此】【不】【堪】【一】【击】，【实】【在】【是】【让】【我】【失】【望】【啊】。” 【随】【着】【一】【声】【震】【耳】【欲】【聋】【之】【声】，【在】【楚】【家】【上】【空】【响】【起】。【一】【道】【有】【些】【刺】【耳】【的】【笑】【声】，【也】【是】【陡】【然】【响】【彻】【开】【来】。 “【砰】！” 【一】【道】【人】【影】，【被】【砸】【入】【墙】【壁】【之】【中】。 “【黄】
【法】【兰】【克】【林】【窒】【了】【一】【下】，【有】【些】【吞】【吐】【地】【道】：“【我】，【我】【只】【是】【一】【时】【大】【意】【了】。【谁】【知】【道】【那】【个】【秦】【启】【突】【然】【攻】【击】【我】。【我】【猜】，【肯】【定】【跟】【吉】【丽】【雅】【有】【关】，【他】【羡】【慕】【我】【跟】【吉】【丽】【雅】【的】【关】【系】，【所】【以】【他】【就】【想】【杀】【死】【我】。” 【希】【丽】【斯】【沉】【吟】【了】【一】【阵】，“【看】【来】【屠】【刹】【盟】【突】【破】【峡】【谷】【也】【是】【迟】【早】【的】【事】【了】，【吩】【咐】【下】【去】，【让】【所】【有】【人】【做】【好】【准】【备】【吧】。” 【法】【兰】【克】【林】【应】【了】，【便】【立】【即】【退】【下】【了】。