Vasco da Gama’s coaching team of Tony de Nobrega and Keenin Lesch are back from Portugal where they worked at top club Vitoria de Gimaraes for two weeks.
National First Division side Vasco and the Portuguese top-flight team have a technical partnership and De Nobrega and Lesch’s time abroad was part of a learning experience and the sharing of knowledge.
The duo attended roughly 30 training sessions with the first team of Gimaraes and the reserve side, experiencing how things are done in Portugal.
Vasco first team coach De Nobrega said: “Our actual training sessions are very similar, I think we are all up to speed with modern day football.
“But they train more, they work harder, and use the gym a lot more. Some of their players go back into the gym after training. The work ethic in the players is much higher than it is here.
“I think we know that, but to see it is something else. Many players at Gimaraes spend extra hours after training to improve themselves. You see a lot of that. Players sleep, eat and drink football.
“So, we will try and put some structures in place here at Vasco … the harder our players work the further they can go. But it should come from within the player. Not us coaches. The players need to implement this.”
Assistant coach at Vasco Keenin Lesch believes the difference between Vasco and the Portuguese is that their will to succeed.
“Not only do they train hard but they are also train longer,” Lesch told Kick Off website.
“They don’t have any excuses not to be on the training field. I mean we went there in the cold and even when it was raining they were out there putting in the hard work,” said Lesch.
“We often say that we want to succeed but I do not think we want it as bad as they do. Apart from that football is their only sport and they have great infrastructures to work with.”
Vasco get their NFD season back underway with a game against Royal Eagles away in Durban on Wednesday night, 11 February.