INTERVIEW >> Leaving FC Porto, former coordinator and coach José Tavares foresees the rise of more athletes from the youth team to the A team in the near future
The fact that Vitinha, Fábio Vieira and Baró were champions is, for José Tavares, a sign that something was well done.
The generation of Diogos and that of Fábio Vieira e Vitinha was a success. How was their talent shaped?
– Talent differs in many ways. And when it is understood, challenged to develop and in the proper timing, when it is supported in success and things go well, there is a moment when everything clicks. And in those moments we can have the European title, as it happened. When we have a Fábio Vieira, a Vitinha, a Romário Baró and an Afonso Sousa who, in the Under-15s, were all interior midfielders and managed to reach the B team, with three of them being champions in the A team, something must have been done exceptional way.
We always believe that it’s what they have that will make them into the A team, but they should be able to improve what they don’t have. There is a time when, if you don’t, you will end up having a career at other competitive levels. But when they understand it in the right timing, things happen this way and we end up having Fábio Vieira and Vitinha having the success they had, thanks to their talent and all the people who helped them. Then, with the work of Sérgio Conceição, at the moment of truth they produced results and performance, because they always had talent.
He coached Vasco Sousa and Bernardo Folha. How do you see the fact that they are in the first team’s pre-season?
-There are specific characteristics that show us, in moments of truth, that we can trust them and believe that they will succeed. Bernardo and Vasco are two, there are others, in which, once again, the work of Sérgio Conceição, António Folha and their technical teams throughout this time in the development, in understanding the appropriate timings for the athletes to have more exposure or less, to be invited to play more or less frequently, is decisive in the career of these players. The Porto players can rest assured, because the competence in the A and B team for the development of talent is exceptional.
It is normal for fans to have a connection with the athletes in the formation and demand that they start playing. Is excessive expectations the greatest enemy of young people?
-Whoever wants to make a top career has to be able to deal with internal and external pressures from teammates, coaches, clubs, agents, partners, social networks. If they focus on what they are capable of doing and develop talent when they have the opportunity, their path will naturally follow. FC Porto fights to win the Champions League, the championship and all other competitions. Our players have to be aware of this complexity, because it’s not just to play a game or earn income for a while; it is to fight on a weekly basis, for entire seasons.
How do you explain to someone outside the process what the right timing is?
-Members and fans always have to trust whoever makes those decisions, because everyone wants the best for the club and the players. Often, patience and tolerance are important for, in this fast-paced world we live in, we realize that the timings are not those of the ego, the mind of each one, parents and agents, but the reality that is in sight. If we have the wisdom to wait for the right moment, things will happen as you wish.