Over the past few years, the Italian Serie A has improved in a number of things like viewership across the world, entertainment from games and also attracted players at the peak of their careers for the first time in a while. Calcio is no longer looked at as a retirement plan which offers Champions League football but rather a challenge.
The most influential point in this change has been the swift move from the traditional Catenaccio style to deploying modern and more offensive football tactics. By doing this, many Italian teams have overlooked hiring traditional Calcio coaches in favour of their young ambitious counterparts.
Nine of the twenty Serie A games have Head Coaches below the age of 50, making the average age of all League gaffers 50.05 years. Young people all over the world are known for not fearing to take risks, the same can be said for Serie A’s young tacticians.
Their rise to prominence has been because most of all these coaches (apart from Andrea Pirlo and Fabio Liverani who will be in charge of Juve and Parma respectively for the first time) have made tactical changes away from the traditional ones to new innovative ones which not only bring in results but also attract more fans and revellers all over the world.
They have amazingly been able to do this with a young crop of players being the backbones of their teams, most of whom have played the most minutes of their careers under these young coaches. Part of their success can also be attributed to the Football Directors at their respective clubs.
The Directors have been able to bring in players with not very big profiles to cloud those of the managers and also players, which are flexible and can easily work with these coaches. This has, in turn, has given the Azzuri a large number of young already tested and proven crop of players to select from to help the national win more trophies soon.
41-year-old Roberto De Zerbi, one of the biggest coaching prospects in Italy, known for his free-flowing possession-based attacking football has been a big revelation in Serie A ever since he made his coaching debut in the League with Benevento in 17/18. And although Benevento was relegated after a season mired by controversies and poor results, he was snapped by Sassuolo.
De Zerbi usually employs attack-minded formations, 4-2-3-1 and 4-3-3 depending on his opponents. With explosive players Jeremie Boga and captain Domenico Berardi playing on the wings, his Sassuolo side is a force to reckon with. He guided Sassuolo to 11th place finish in his first season and 8th last season (their highest in history). Bigger things are expected from De Zerbi in seasons to come.
Young Tacticians Have Had a Tremendous Impact on the Calcio Way of Football
In Verona, a former student and assistant of Gian Piero Gasperini look to have finally mastered his art. After a relatively successful 19/20 season fresh from Serie B with Hellas, Croat Ivan Juric looks to finally have established himself as a one for the future.
Tipped to become one of Calcio’s best in football management by another football writer Jim Hart in 2017, 3 years later we can comfortably say Juric has found his mojo. Juric employs a 3-4-3 for most of the time from which his team is always a highly pressing side, possessive, quick in transitions and attack-minded.
A lot can be talked about the above two Coaches but unfortunately, their good style of football is yet to be rewarded by a major trophy.
Which Young Tactician will win Silverware this Season in Calcio?
However, some have won some trophies in the recent past like most recently Gennaro Gattuso guided Napoli to Copa Italia triumph. When he was appointed to take on the realms in Naples, Gattuso found a disjointed and demotivated team to which he applied his biggest tool as a coach, Motivation.
With this he managed to get the ship sailing and properly and after Lockdown, Napoli looked a threat like it once was in the previous seasons. Filippo Inzaghi also managed to complete what is so far his best season as a football manager as a Serie B Champion with Benevento.
Another underrated name to look out for is Spezia’s, Vincenzo Italiano. The 42-year-old has masterminded two back to back promotions in his 4-year management career. He first promoted Trapani to the Serie B in 2019 and then promoted Spezia to Serie A for their first time in history this year.
Italiano was wanted by a host of Serie A teams before the beginning of this season but Spezia refused to let him go. His biggest task this season will be making sure the Aquilotti are up to their biggest task in their 114 years history.
It would be a disservice not to say a word or two about the most consistent of this bunch, Lazio Manager Simone Inzaghi. In April 2016, he was first appointed on a caretaker basis but was later appointed on a permanent basis after the club’s association with Marcelo Bielsa did not last a week due what might have been lack of ambition in the market by the club.
The club decided to stick with a not high demanding manager Simone Inzaghi, a union which has been good with both sides. Since his rise to prominence four years ago, Simone has managed a win percentage of 54.19%, one Coppa Italia and two Super coppa Italia for the club from the club.
For this 2020/21 season, all eyes will on newly appointed Juventus Coach Andrea Pirlo. The fans will be eager to find out if the former Italy International can win bigger challenges than Most Stylist Manager.
Pirlo already gave the world an image of how he wanted his team to play and it is not so different from other managers in his age bracket. “I want to bring some enthusiasm, what has been missing in the last period,” said Pirlo.
The new Juve Boss continued, “I want to propose a proactive football and domination of the play. ” He told his players that the team needs to always have the ball and if lost it should be recovered in the lowest time possible. What Pirlo is promising is that he won’t be just winning but winning with style and flair.
Unlike other coaches in this category, Pirlo has the budget to implement whatever tactics he wants and arguably also the best players in the League in every position. What looks like the constraints hindering others from adding silverware to their coaching careers, is, in turn, the advantage Pirlo has over them and possibly even in the league.
An attractive brand of football is not enough to cement a coach’s name in the hearts of football lovers as a great coach or manager, one needs to win trophies. The next challenge for all these coaches is to try and challenge for Trophies in Italy and beyond.
Also, read: Calcio Returns: 2020/21 Italian Serie A Preview
Author: Katende Basajjabaka
Katende writes about sports and occasionally technology.