The Great Debate: Who is the best manager of the 21st century?

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Dan Burke

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This week, Globe Soccer announced the nominees for their upcoming awards in categories such as Player of the Century, Club of the Century and our personal favourite … Agent of the Century.

But never mind all that because for this week’s edition of the The Great Debate we’re asking: Who is the greatest manager of the 21st century?

Our writers (and some of our Twitter followers) have their say …

Lewis Ambrose

Football has changed incredibly since 1999, with collective tactical setups now taking the edge over individuals who have moments of brilliance.

No manager’s teams embody that change better than Jürgen Klopp.

He turned Dortmund from sleeping giants into title-winners not only returned them to the Champions League but made them dark horses, then delivered the big-eared pot at Liverpool before ending their wait for a league title. Plus, unlike other candidates for this list, he’s not showed any signs of decline just yet.

Can you really argue with that?

Dan Burke

Pep Guardiola just edges for me.

Maybe he’ll never hit the heights he achieved at Barcelona ever again but he turned a team who had fallen by the wayside into the greatest club side of all-time, before going on to revolutionise the game in Germany and England.

He might not be having the best time of it at the moment, but write him off at your peril.

Phil Costa

I’m going for the one, the only, Arsène Wenger.

He arrived in England to raised eyebrows and personal attacks, but his managerial C.V speaks for itself with an incredible contribution to football both on and off the pitch.

Not only were his teams brilliant to watch, not only did he manage the Invincibles, but his integrity, charm and kindness were qualities that surged beyond sport.

Matt Frohlich

Despite the fact he may not be the current flavour of the month, it has to be Pep Guardiola.

Managers are often cited for either the trophies they have won or the style of football they have played along the way, but Guardiola has both. He hasn’t just implemented a new style of football to the teams he’s coached, but literally changed the way football has been viewed, analysed and coached within that club, the league and across the continent.

Then he goes and wins everything whilst doing it, he has changed football forever.

Alex Mott

He may have retired in 2013 but no manager has dominated football more in the 21st century than Sir Alex Ferguson.

He started the 2000s by winning the Premier League – he ended his career 13 years later, by winning the Premier League.

In between, Manchester United won the Champions League and made it to two more finals and dominated the English game like no other side.

Pádraig Whelan

His finest moments may have came in the ’90s but even after the turn of the century, Alex Ferguson was still the best around.

He led United to 19 honours in that time, including a Champions League title (and would have had more were it not for running into the best Barcelona team ever).

Leading one of the weakest United sides of his tenure to the title in his final season just showed he had the magic until the end.


Join us next week for another edition of The Great Debate.