Xavi ‘Matador’ Arnau

Euro Hockey Leaqua
EINDHOVEN – EHL Hockey ronde 1 Campo Madrid v Bruxelles foto: coach Xavi Arnau. FFU PRESS AGENCY COPYRIGHT FRANK UIJLENBROEK

Who is Xavi Arnau?

Former hockey player, played for Atletic Terrassa (1991-2000), R.C.Polo Barcelona (2000-2004) and Harvesterhuder HTC (1998). Also with the National Spanish Team.
Currently I am a Coach, started with the women’s team of R.C.Polo, after that Club de Campo women’s also and finally Club de Campo men’s during 7 years. Now I am in Belgium with Royal Pingouin Club.
During the World Cup 2013 in New Delhi, I was Head Coach of National Spanish team U-21 and also coached National Spanish Indoor Team for 5 years.
Simultaneously I am the Sports Director of School Club de Campo Hockey, something I did before with Atletic Terrassa and R.C.Polo.

What are you currently doing?

I am Head Coach of Royal Pingouin men’s team in Belgium, it is my second year here and I also assist the 1st women’s team of this club.
I work in Madrid with Club de Campo, I,m the Sports Director of the Hockey academy. I am really happy with this because I am Sports Teacher and like to work with the kids.

Future plans and ambitions?

At this moment I want to continue to be a Club Coach, obviously at some point I would like to take a National Team. For me every year it’s important because you can learn all the time and you can take experience everywhere. For example, now I like to know about the Belgian Hockey because it is a country where the hockey is growing up every year.

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Can you tell us about your player and coaching career?

I played with Atletic Terrassa from 1991 until 2000, with this club I win all possible  club tournaments, the Spanish League (6 times) King’s Cup (7 times) Indoor Spanish League (7 times) and after one European Cup in 1998 and two times we won European Cup Winners Cup in 1994 and 2000.
After that, in 1998 I played with Harvesterhuder (Germany) with Michael Green, Buddy Blunk, Teun De Noijeer, Russell Garcia, Saliger … and we won the German League.
I played with the national Spanish team for 12 years, I played 3 Olympic Games (Barcelona ’92, Atlanta ’96 and Sydney 2000), 3 Worlds Cups, (Sydney 1994, Utrech 1998, Kuala Lumpur 2002). My best result with the National Spanish team was in Atlanta ’96 we took the silver medal, in Utrech ’98 we also got silver, both those finals were against Netherlands.
My career as Coach, I am doing that during the last 11 years. I started at R.C.Polo Barcelona with the first women’s team in 2004-2005 and 2005-2006. With that team we won Spanish League and King’s  Cup. After that I went to Madrid with the first women’s team of Club de Campo. I did only one year but was really nice, we were indoor and outdoor Spanish Champions and European Cup winners Cup in 2007.
After, I took the first men’s team in Club de Campo during 7 years. With this team I’ve won 2 King’s Cup, and some Indoor Spanish League. During 4 years we played at EHL and the best result was in 2011 when we played the Final Four and we only lost the final vs HGC for 1-0.
Last year, I started with R.Pingouin in the second highest Belgian division, we promoted and this year we are playing in the top division of Belgium.
While coaching the Spanish Indoor team during 5 years, we played 2 European Indoor Cups.

Who were the best players you have worked with?

I had the good luck to work with a lot of world class players. For me all players in the team are really important because everybody can have a specific place inside of the team. But of course I can put a list of “big names” in the world of hockey that I had in my team during past years.

Smith and Hickman,from Australia, Oli Korn, Moritz Furste, Oscar Decker from Germany (all Olympic gold medalists). After that I had some good players from Argentina, Nacho Begner, Willy Schikendantzs, Rodrigo Vila, Matias Vila and of course good players from Spain like Edi Tubau, Xavi Trenchs, Titi Sojo, Bosco Perez-Pla, Andres Mir, etc.

COPA DE EUROPA DE HOQUEI HIERBA.RC POLO-MONTROUGE.
COPA DE EUROPA DE HOQUEI HIERBA.RC POLO-MONTROUGE.

Idols?

For me the best was Shabbaz Amed from Pakistan. This guy was a really incredible player, so fast with the ball, skills, etc etc. The best player of the World.

Xavi Arnau

Barrafinal

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