Football Friends Online – When 90 Mins Is Not EnoughThe world’s greatest football person - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough The world’s greatest football person - Football Friends Online - When 90 Mins Is Not Enough

The world’s greatest football person

You think of a great football manager and the most probable name to come to your mind is Fergie. Wenger is another, Mourinho, Lippi, etc – without doubt they all join the Scot in a repertoire of memorable managers to have had success at the top of the game.

Now consider great footballers. Romario, Cantona, Bergkamp, Lineker – I could go on. They are great footballers but they haven’t achieved anything really creditable in the game since their last kick of a ball.

It begs the question, who is the best all round football person? Who has combined being a great player and latterly managing with large amounts of success?’

I guess it depends on what you determine as ‘great.’ For me, Hughes, Van Basten, Guardiola and such are discarded because their managerial careers, although featuring success, haven’t achieved anything compared to the true ‘greats’ within management.

So who are my nominations?


Rinus Michels

It was hard to think past Michels when you consider the type of football he invented, Total Football. His style of play was dubbed this bizarre title because of the players he possessed that could to play it, but it cannot be argued he played his part.

It has to be said the playing side of Michels’ career is not up there with the greatest, but he was a major influence on Ajax where he played his entire playing career, bagging just about a goal every two games. The fact that he had a large part in influencing some of Europe’s finest ever players from the dugout just sees him make the list. Rinus found the great Cruyff and Neeskens to name just a few and led Ajax to four European Cup finals, three of which they won from ‘71-‘73. Later, the Dutchman took Holland to their only major honour, the ’88 European Championships.

Not bad I have to admit…

Rating              –           1/5


Franz Beckenbauer

Ahhh…. It pains me to include a German in the list, but look at his record and tell me he doesn’t deserve it. If you didn’t know anything about him and you looked at his record you’d immediately think that he was a front man, or at least an attacking midfielder, but Franz was usually seen playing sweeper. That’s what made his playing career that extra bit special. The twice crowned European Footballer of the Year retired in 1983 with a list of trophies longer than the autobahn. He later took Bayern Munich to European honours in the UEFA Cup from the sidelines and other than an abolished four month spell at Marseille, his managerial career wasn’t half bad.

Rating              –           2/5


Kenny Dalglish

The Scottish sensation makes the shortlist because of his array of honours as a player at Celtic and Liverpool. Other than an ill-fated spell in charge of Newcastle following on from another arguable contender for this award, Kevin Keegan, his career is one that is frequently talked about over a pint. He was the ring master of the famous Liverpool team of the eighties and became a cult hero throughout Anfield’s terraces, before emulating that success in the dugout. After a controversial farewell to Anfield he led an unfashionable Blackburn to the Premiership crown which by anybodies standards is simply world class.

Rating              –           3/5


Johan Cruyff

Not to be mistaken with his less elusive son, Johan makes the shortlist for a mesmeric playing career, followed by an eleven year club management career with Ajax and Barca. Two Dutch cup victories, two Cup Winners Cups (one Ajax, one Barcelona), four La Liga titles, a Spanish cup, a European cup and a Super Cup… need I say any more? It would have been hard to think that one of Rinus Michels’ protégés could effectively master the master off in the dugout, if that makes any sense.

With the boots on, Johan could dance like Maradona, pass like Zidane and finish like Van Basten – but all in his own unique style. I could list umpteen trophies again but three Ballon D’or awards pretty much says it all about what is without doubt a ‘great’ player, and a ‘great’ manager.

Rating              –           4/5


Brian Clough

Brian Howard Clough OBE… there aren’t many men in the game with royal honours. Charismatic, outspoken, unfashionable, rowdy, a big-time-charlie, arrogant, brilliant… all of the above and much much more – but all of these tags were a credit to what is in my opinion, the ultimate football man. He scored an incredible 251 goal in 274 games before he was agonisingly forced into retirement due to injury. How great could he have been? Undoubtedly he will have added to his two England caps.

Cloughy overachieved in management to the point that no man could ever replicate again. With his trusty sidekick, Peter Taylor, the pair guided relative minnows Derby and Nottingham Forest to heights that will never ever be replicated. Winning the top club competition, The European Cup, with the latter was in my opinion the biggest achievement in football history and for that; Brian Clough is my ultimate football man.

Rating              –           5/5


Simon Bourne!/I3orny

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