Arttu Haapala, Daniel Amokachi and Santeri Ukkola
Arttu Haapala, Daniel Amokachi and Santeri Ukkola

There is completely different kind of action in Hercules team training while the team is preparing for their first season in Finnish 2nd Division. The reason for the action is in Nigerian national teams ex-coach, Daniel Amokachi, who is firmly addressing his players and demanding constantly more from them. “As my first job I doubled the amount of training session”, tells Amokachi. “We are going to have the most athletic team in the league with stamina to run other teams over”, continues freshly appointed head coach. Hercules begun having the morning training session when Amokachi arrived and took over the team. “It is a challenge for some of the player whom study or work during the daytime”, says assistant coach Pekka Haaranen. “I’m delighted that still so many of the players can make it to the morning sessions – on couple of occasions we already have had even 20 players present”, adds Haaranen.

Excellent chance for young players

Hercules offers an excellent change for young players willing to take the next step on their careers. “From time to time it is a really good choice to bring somebody from outside the club to shake thing up a bit”, comments legendary Hercules staff member Timo Perälä. “We did this already a few years ago, when Nigerian ex-national team player, Ladi Babalola, coached the team for one and half a season during 2010 to 2011. During that time the team took a big leap forward and was eventually promoted to Finnish 3rd Division”, Perälä remembers. “After signing of Amokachi I believe the players, the team, and the whole club organization, will take another big leap forward. Those taking the chance will not feel sorry for the taking the opportunity”, states Perälä.

Hercules just signed two new faces to the squad – young, Oulu-based, players Santeri Ukkola, 17 yo and Arttu Haapala, 19 yo, both want to make a progress and take the next step. “I like Amokachi’s high-demand level”, says U18 national team player Ukkola. “Tempo has been high and Daniel will give you instant feedback, if your level is not what is required”, adds central defender Ukkola. Haapala also likes the high-demand level. “I want to develop myself as a player, and having determined and demanding coach will definitely help”, he comments. “Personally I feel that due to this opportunity I want to leave everything on the pitch when playing or training and thus making myself a better player”, says attacking midfielder Haapala with a smile on his face.

An opportunity to shine

In the coming two weeks, Hercules will give new tryout-players a chance. On week 6 (7.-14.2.2016) four new player will be included and four more on week 7. If you want to join please contact assistant coach Pekka Haaranen (firstname.surname@jshercules.com, or call 040 573 81 76). “We are not competing with wages, but by giving a real opportunity to develop the playing skills.”, says Timo Perälä. “If playing skills and mind are at the right level, and you won’t mind about hard training, you should be good for the team”, adds Haaranen.

Hercules will face AC Takinkääntäjät, whom were promoted to 3rd Division for season 2016, in a friendly match Saturday 13.2.2016 clk 16:00 at Heinäpää indoor arena. This will be Daniel Amokachi’s first match in control.