14 Jul 2015

«With all due respect to Mourinho, Ferguson is the best»

The students of «Sport Industry Management» RMA business school program have visited the educational and training camp ground of PFK CSKA in Moscow’s suburban Vatutinka area. Here they witnessed first hand the training by the main team in preparation to the new upcoming RFPL season, and have later own met with the chief coach of the “army” team Leonid Slutskiy. During the conversation, he told students about which other coaches have influenced him the most.

«In the beginning of my carrier - Arrigo Sacchi. It has been a long time ago in Volgograd, I was then coaching the junior «Olympia». These were rather dull times - the video tapes with football training and educational materials for coaches have been rarity. I was lucky though, to have discovered one of those, specifically by Sacchi, where he explained in great detail the methodology of developing a strong zone defense.  This video tape had an enormous effect on me, and I have gained a great deal of knowledge from it.  For the times we were in - that was something absolutely new to us: it was common playing with «libero» under personal oversight…  Among the the other old school coaches I can mention Michel Hidalgo and Carlos Bilardo… I particularly admired the performance and playing style displayed by their teams. Our entire understanding of foreign football was based mostly on watching large international tournaments, since the games by individual foreign clubs were simply not broad-casted to us here at the time.

Concerning the present day as well as the most recent period, then Ferguson - is certainly the best. For a quarter century he has been holding his team at the top-level, which is quite unbelievable. To achieve consistently high results with different generations of players, many of whom could easily be his grand children, yet not to lose his motivation for so many years - that deserves nothing but admiration. Of course, Mourinho is also a large caliber coach. But their main difference is that Mourinho was able to achieve his high results with different teams. That is also a highly difficult task, that commands great respect, however, to my mind that is still easier than to be consistently winning for many years straight with the same single team, growing it, and searching for the new talents to be added in… When you change clubs and enter a new collective - this is bound to cause some sort of emotional impact on you, bringing forth new challenges, new motivations, even if only through the change of environment… In contrast with that, Ferguson have not had any such dramatic changes, yet he always maintained his status and ethos of the winner. Hence, I truly believe he is the best. And I’m saying that with all due respect to Mourinho», -- says Leonid Slutskiy. 

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