5 Insights from EPL Managers That All New Coaches Should Live By

Over the years the English Premier League has been host to some of the most influential, talented, and famous managers in the world. What they all have in common, however, is their ability to inspire, lead, and imprint their philosophy and tactical approach on every team they’ve coached. We discussed previously on Coachable that it’s no secret that a coach’s ability to inspire their players is a crucial skill in soccer, and the following great managers embody this philosophy.


Sir Alex Ferguson Trophy


Arsene Wenger – “As a coach, you can influence the diet of your players. You can point out what is wrong.”

Arsene Wenger

Today, it is well known that a proper diet is an essential aspect of player performance. However, in the 1980s and 1990s clubs didn’t see it that way. Taking over Arsenal in 1996 after spending two years in Japan with Nagoya Grampus Eight, Wenger brought with him the fitness and dietary habits he learned in the East. Sport site Ladbrokes states that Wenger focused on healthy carbohydrates, such as rice and pasta, alongside healthier options like fish. The biggest overhaul was completely eliminating alcohol. He essentially overhauled the club’s laid-back culture almost overnight. The effects on player performance were obvious and his methods ended up extending many players’ careers.


Sir Alex Ferguson – “The experience of defeat, or more particularly the manner in which a leader reacts to it, is an essential part of what makes a winner.

Sir Alex Ferguson

Leaders inspire and lead by example, and none is greater than former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson. As the longest-serving manager in England, Ferguson took over Manchester United in 1986, eight years before the Premier League’s inception. He lifted a total of 38 trophies at Old Trafford and won the Premier League Manager of the Season on 11 occasions. After his retirement in 2013, it is no wonder then that Ferguson found a second act in retirement as a business guru. His successful management and leadership approach have allowed him to overcome several major challenges during his tenure at the club.


Sam Allardyce – “We simplified the game which helped. Played a simple game to get the basics right and build the confidence back up again.”

Sam Allardyce

Without mastering the basics, even the most talented players will wither and fall. Soccer is a simple game, but mastering its basics is the difficult part. Sam Allardyce engineered a revival at Everton when he took over in December notes First Post. Allardyce is known for his bulldog attitude and proven track record of preserving the Premier League status of clubs. He has never been relegated with any club. Together with Arsene Wenger, his is one of the pioneers of sports science in the English game, and his focus on the basics and man-management stand out as his greatest strengths.


Pep Guardiola – “Our job is to convince the guys that is the best way to go…in the end it is what I have to do to convince you.”

Pep Guardiola

You can be the greatest coach or manager in the world, but if you can’t inspire your players or convert them to your philosophy, you’ll never be able to lead them. Such is the view of one of the most successful managers in Europe, Pep Guardiola. Having trained under the tutelage of the great Johan Cruyff at Barcelona, Guardiola eventually took over at the Catalan club, followed by three years at Bayern Munich and now at Manchester City. His tactical philosophy of pressuring off the ball, and swiftly winning back possession has remained at the clubs he has coached, ingrained into the teams’ playing style.


Bill Shankly – “Some people believe football is a matter of life and death. I’m very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that.”

Bill Shankly

Attitude is everything when it comes to soccer; players must be both physically and mentally astute and fully believe in the game, the team and themselves if they are to succeed. Legendary Liverpool manager Bill Shankly was described by The Guardian as the Muhammad Ali of soccer. His philosophies and utterances were undeniably poetic, yet reflected his undying dedication and belief in the game as well as his club. Known as the architect of Liverpool’s supremacy in England and Europe, Shankly transformed the club into the finest team of its generation.


Written exclusively for coachable.com.au

Prepared by GrowSports_AC


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