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Academy Corner: David Bell

David Bell is not afraid of challenges or change. That’s why, after over 30 years in his career, he decided to pack his bags and come to Italy for a new adventure
Since Cesc Fàbregas temporarily moved to the first team, Bell has returned to his role as the coach of Como 1907’s Primavera team. We met up with him to hear about his experience.

Good morning, Mr. Bell. How is the return to the bench going?
I’m clearly happy about it. Many of the boys I have already coached, and this is an advantage. I am very excited about this new challenge.

Another adventure after varied youth roles across a number of teams

I’ve coached a bit of everything. I believe that personal and professional growth always comes from the horizons that each person creates. I’ve been at Manchester United, in the player development area, at the two Bristol teams, City and Rovers; at Cardiff City, and a few years ago, I started working with the Irish federation. I had the opportunity to coach both male and female youth national teams and learned a lot from these experiences. However, it’s not my first time far from home; over the years, I spent eight months in Iceland, always working in youth development.

Where are we with Como?

The goal is to bring as many pro players through the Academy, even better if wearing the Como jersey. We have Diego Ronco, who is a stable presence in the first team, and Marco Tremolada, who is on loan in Serie C but could be a good prospect in the future. You’ve seen that Rispoli has had his first call-up. The path is the right one, but player development takes time.

What is the most important aspect of the Primavera team?

Teaching players to have a winning mentality. Many, as soon as they enter the world of professional football, face a reality where the result is the most important thing, and mentally they can’t handle it. At 19 years old, there is still ample room for improvement in terms of football, but what makes the difference is mentality. I always tell my players that they must chase their dreams because dreams will never chase us.

Outside the field in Italy, how is it going?I am enjoying every single minute here. I am trying to learn the language well; occasionally, I make some mistakes, and my players tease me. It’s part of the game, and I like to joke about it. The truth is that I like everything here. At one point, I also had a health problem, and the club helped me a lot, for which I will be eternally grateful.