Those 90 minutes are what matter. That time determines how fans judge players and how reputations are built, but it's not the players that make the club. To understand the true DNA of a club you have to dig deeper behind-the-scenes and talk to the people that live and breathe it – that's where you find a real representation.

On our recent excursion to Eindhoven with Umbro we sat down with Marcel Hover, the PSV kitman. Marcel has been at the club for 40 years; PSV is his life. Ahead of the club's Champions League tie with Atlético Madrid, he took time out of his pre-match preparations to chat to us about what the club means to him.

Marcel, thanks for stopping to talk. Can you tell us about your role at the club?

No problem. This is my second season as the kit man for the first team. Before that, I worked for the academy for twelve years, so I've worked for the club for 14 years full time but I've been at the club for 40 years.

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How did you first get involved with club?

Firstly, I've always been a PSV supporter but I started to play football at PSV when I was six-years-old and I grew up through the academies until I was nineteen. When I was nineteen I had a motorcycle accident and that was football finished for me, but the club are a family club and they told me they wanted to keep me, they said they'd find me a job.

The club looked after me, they gave me new opportunities. Everyone wants to be a football player and I was no different in the academy at PSV. But after the accident I knew I had to do something else. I started as a linesman for the under 9s and continued that right up to the under 19s. It was strange going through the academy again!

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So, how did you become the first-team kitman?

The previous kitman retired and I declared my interest in the job as I had been linesman for the youth teams for a long time. On a Saturday morning when you got to the club you went and drunk coffee with the kitman, everyone did, so I learnt a lot from him and I was near enough ready to take straight over.

What's it like working for your boyhood club?

The atmosphere working here is great. I know most of the young players from the academy and a few of them have also lived with my family when they first moved to the club, so I've seen them grow up. Now I'm the kit man and they are key players, it's like we've gone to the first team together even though I'm 45 and they're 17!

I've always supported PSV, it's my first and only club. The players may change but behind the scenes it's the same. That's PSV, if you see someone going out and wanting to be bigger than the club then they won't last here, they won't belong here. I don't know what it's like to be a professional football player but I do know what it's like to nearly be one and then have it taken away. When you have an accident and have to quit it's horrible and I'm incredibly grateful that the club stood by me.

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What does a typical match-day preparation look like for you?

We prepare and take all the kit to the stadium the day before the game. On a match day when all the players are in the hotel we'll drink a lot of coffee with all the guys behind the scenes - that's a very PSV thing to do, sit down and drink coffee together and then three or four hours before the game I go to the stadium to do my final preparations to the kit. When I was playing you would have kit that was all one size, all far too big for you, now all the players want is tight fitting clothing.

So many players return to PSV after their playing days. Andre Oojer, Cocu, van Nistlerooy to name a few. Why is that?

It's family. You see Paul in the cafe (Paul's the guy who cooked our breakfast at the training ground that morning) his parents were here for sixty years and they became like my parents too because I was always here and never at home. It was the same for all the players. Paul's father sadly passed away but now Paul has taken over - the club love the people that love the club. It's a two-way relationship here.

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How important is the club to the people of Eindhoven?

You can't describe it. You have Philips and you have PSV and together it's a world brand that represents the city. Philips won't be the shirt sponsor next year but they will always remain as the club's DNA, and that DNA is everything for the supporters - it brings the community together and gives us a reason to be proud.