Former Dutch women’s coach passes away aged 70
Nieuwegein, Netherlands, April 7, 2014 - After falling seriously sick some months ago, the former coach of the Dutch women’s national team, Pierre Mathieu, passed away last Thursday, April 3, aged 70. Mathieu was at the helm of the “Oranjes” from 1998 to 2000 and apart from coaching teams in his home country, he also worked in Belgium and Germany.
Mathieu is one of the most successful coaches in Dutch Volleyball history. In the second half of the ‘70s, Mathieu dominated the Dutch Volleyball scene and first division while mentoring the team of Starlift Blokkeer. That same team won silver in the 1978 edition of the Champions Cup losing the final match to Poland’s Plomien Milowice. The same team went on to win the 1982 CEV Cup edging past Italy’s Toseroni AS Roma in the final. His last major success dates back to 2005 when he won the Dutch Women’s Supercup with the team of Longa. In 2009 Mathieu was presented with the golden pin of the Dutch Volleyball Federation (Nevobo) for his outstanding contribution to the sport.
Starting from 1988, Mathieu held several positions also within the Dutch Volleyball Federation, working first with the junior national team before in 1998 he was appointed coach of the women’s national team. While at the helm of the “Oranjes”, Mathieu finished seventh at the 1998 World Championship in Japan and fifth a year later at the European Championship held in Italy.
Mathieu was known for his striking personality and his love for the sport of volleyball. Up to last year he visited many competitions and volleyball matches in the Netherlands. “Pierre was an outstanding personality and one of the best coaches we have ever had,” comments the Sport Director of the Dutch Volleyball Federation, Michel Everaert. “He was mentally very strong and always succeeded in achieving his goals.”