There are three different types of Coaches – the selfish, the unlucky and the great. The selfish Coaches, much like Jose Mourinho, are men more interested in their own credentials and future prosperity than the welfare of their teams. The unlucky is a man who has the necessary skills and the right ideas but a man for whom trophies will always remain elusive. Perhaps one could say Luciano Spalletti belongs to this group. And finally, there are the greats. These are the men that have elevated their teams to new heights and achieved the impossible dream. They are the men who have etched their names into the history of their clubs and they are the Coaches who have fully earned their numerous and coveted trophies. Sir Alex Ferguson and Marcello Lippi (barring recent Azzurri performances) are the great examples of this final category.
Ciro Ferrara, according to most Bianconeri fans, will soon belong to this final group. “For me, [Ferrara] is not a discovery. Not even a novelty. I know Ciro from having come up against him several times as an opponent – he will do well, very well.” Sir Alex Ferguson was quoted as saying by Turin based newspaper Tuttosport. Is it too early to predict the success of the Bianconeri Coach? Probably not. When management were looking for a new tactician over the summer, Ferrara, Spalletti and Antonio Conte were their choices. By process of elimination, Ferrara was the chosen one as the others devoted their futures to their respective clubs. And yet here we are, at the beginning of a new season and the other two are without a job. Meanwhile Ferrara’s hunger to succeed and sheer determination have seen him win four consecutive league games. He has the class to dismiss Mourinho’s comments, the desire to reinvigorate his squad and the personality to demand answers from wantaway striker, David Trezeguet. All together in addition to his aim of introducing new training techniques might well see this stalwart defender steal the crown from Lippi.
Question is, will he succeed where others have failed in the youth sector? Latest reports around the peninsula suggest that Italy is furious with English clubs for continuously poaching rising Italian starlets. Bruno Conti was the most recent figure to publicly criticise the manner in which English clubs, such as Manchester United, have ‘robbed’ young Italian talents and are looking to Michel Platini to help change the law in Italy to avoid further robberies. No country likes to see their greatest home grown talents playing abroad, especially not after having spent countless hours and substantial amounts of money on training them and yet, if the law was to be changed, would this really be in Italy’s best interest?
Mourinho recently fired back on a comment made regarding the future of David Santon by asking whether or not Nicola Legrottaglie and Sebastian Giovinco should also look to play elsewhere in order to guarantee first team football. In all honesty, the future of the former does not interest many Italians. He is perhaps too old and too familiar with mediocrity to really demand a starring role in the Azzurri. The devout Catholic who once confessed to abstaining from sex for the good of his career also recently admitted that he would have considered a move elsewhere had he received any requests. However the latter, is a different case entirely. Whilst Giovinco is thought of as the greatest young talent Italy holds, he will most likely spend this campaign warming the bench as his role is currently occupied by a certain Diego. Diego, who has recently been compared to every legendary footballer known to mankind, by all means deserves his starring role. Nevertheless, for the good of Italian football and the Azzurri, young talent should have their space and time to grow and since the Atomic Ant is unable to do this whilst playing for Juve, the boy should be allowed to leave.
To be blunt, would the wonder kid that is Federico Macheda have received the kind of media attention and a call up from Pierluigi Casiraghi had he remained in Italy? And let’s not forget Giuseppe Rossi? Had Manchester United not stolen the child and then transferred him to Villarreal, would he be playing up front for the Azzurri? Until Italian clubs begin to truly nurture the talent their country produces, then the law should not be changed. Manchester United gifted Rossi to the Azzurri and Macheda to the Azzurrini. Meanwhile Mario Balotelli may well give up on his dream to play Italy’s national team and play for Ghana instead as once again, Inter, like all other big Italian clubs, prefer their multi million pound partnership up-front. The best the youth of today can hope for in Italy is a role as a reserve for foreign stars who were lucky enough to have had the faith of their teams. As for Giovinco, perhaps he should listen to the ‘Special one’ on this occasion.
Juventus Club Focus 2009/10
Great expectations – August 21, 2009
When in Rome – August 28, 2009
The decline and fall of the Roman Empire – September 1, 2009
World Champions – One in, one out, one remembered – September 4, 2009
International week (Georgia-Italy, Italy-Bulgaria)
Children should be seen, not heard – September 7, 2009