Vancouver Whitecaps FC announced on Friday the club’s first-team coaching staff under head coach Marc Dos Santos, including Vanni Sartini and Phillip Dos Santos as assistant coaches, and Youssef Dahha as goalkeeper coach. All three coaches have agreed to multi-year contracts.
Sartini, Dos Santos, and Dahha bring close to five combined decades of football experience while playing, coaching, and running coach education programs. The trio have worked across six different countries, and between the three they are able to communicate in six different languages, including: Arabic, English, French, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish.
“Vanni, Phillip, and Youssef are all passionate teachers of the game,” said head coach Marc Dos Santos. “They bring diverse experience, dynamic thinking, and a clear understanding of the methodology that we will be implementing in our training and preparation.”
Whitecaps FC assistant coach Vanni Sartini
- U.S. Soccer Pro Licence Coaching Course educator since 2016
- Coached seven years in his native Italy, including AS Livorno’s promotion to Serie A as assistant in 2013
- Holds a UEFA Pro Licence and fluent in English, Italian, and Spanish, and can also read and understand German
Sartini, 42, arrives from the United States Soccer Federation, where he has served as coach educator since 2016, teaching the U.S. Soccer Pro Licence Coaching Course, the federation’s highest level of coaching education. Prior to his move to the United States, Sartini began professional coaching in 2009 in his native Italy with three seasons as head coach at A.S. Mezzana. In 2012, he moved to A.S. Livorno Calcio as an assistant coach, helping the club win promotion to Serie A following his first campaign. In 2014-15, he took on the assistant coach position at Serie B club S.S.C. Bari.
Sartini moved to the international level in 2015 and had a role in opposition analysis for the Italian youth national teams at the U-17, U-19, and U-21 levels. He held these positions while also serving as a national coach educator for the Italian Football Federation from 2010 to 2016.
Co-author of La Preparazione Precampionato, which translates to Preseason Preparation, a book on football techniques, tactics, and training, Sartini holds a UEFA Pro Licence.
Whitecaps FC assistant coach Phillip Dos Santos
- Assistant coach for USL club Indy Eleven, and at NASL clubs Ottawa Fury FC and San Francisco Deltas
- Canadian-Portuguese citizen with a UEFA A Licence
- Fluent in English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish
Dos Santos, 40, joins his older brother Marc in Vancouver after most recently serving as assistant coach for United Soccer League club Indy Eleven. Prior to that, Dos Santos spent four seasons as an assistant in the North American Soccer League from 2014 to 2017, while also serving as technical director during his time with Ottawa Fury FC from 2013 to 2015. In Ottawa, he helped guide Fury FC to the 2015 NASL Fall Season championship and a runner-up finish in that year’s NASL Soccer Bowl. With San Francisco Deltas he helped guide the club to the 2017 NASL Soccer Bowl championship. At both clubs, he was part of his brother Marc’s staff. In 2016, Dos Santos served as an assistant coach with Fort Lauderdale Strikers.
At the international level, the Canadian-Portuguese dual citizen held various coaching and scouting positions with Canada Soccer’s youth national teams from 2011 to 2014, including his time as head coach for the U-20 side at the 2013 Jeux de la Francophonie in Nice, France. Dos Santos holds a UEFA A Licence.
Whitecaps FC goalkeeper coach Youssef Dahha
- Goalkeeper coach for Ottawa Fury FC in 2018, for Montreal Impact from 2004 to 2017
- Helped establish Montreal Impact Soccer Schools Advanced Centre for Goalkeepers, and served as goalkeeper coach for the Canadian National High Performance Centre in Quebec, and Quebec Soccer
- A Canadian citizen, born in Belgium, raised in Morocco, and fluent in Arabic, English, French, and Italian
Dahha, 46, spent 2018 as goalkeeper coach for Ottawa Fury FC, after spending 13 years with Montreal Impact. In Montreal, Dahha helped the Impact win the A-League championship in 2004, the USL regular season titles in 2005 and 2006, as well as the USL First Division championship in 2009, under head Marc Dos Santos. At the MLS level, he helped Montreal to consecutive Canadian Championships in 2013 and 2014, and a runner-up finish in the 2014-15 Concacaf Champions League.
In 2009, he helped establish the Montreal Impact Soccer Schools Advanced Centre for Goalkeepers. From 2000 to 2010, Dahha played a role in the development of youth goalkeepers at the Canadian National High-Performance Centre in Quebec, and the Quebec Soccer Federation.
A Canadian citizen who was born in Belgium and raised in Morocco, Dahha featured for the Moroccan national team as a youth player, playing in the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games, and in U-17 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.