I have always thought life gives us experiences that are key for our personal development. Taking advantage of them is up to us.
Undoubtedly, that’s how it was with Villarreal.
Juan Mercé, a football lecturer at the Universidad de Valencia, where I was studying sports and exercise science, rang me to say: “You’ve got an interview tomorrow at Villarreal.”
He had recommended me to Juan Carlos Garrido (below), who was then director of the club’s academy, to join the second-team staff.
That recommendation was key for me, because I went from coaching amateur football to becoming part of a professional structure – and, on top of that, at a club like Villarreal.
It was a club that worked – and still does work – by having a very clear identity, uniting the players with a certain style of play and way of training all within the same framework. It’s a combination that has enabled them to get great results over a long period of time.