Sunday, June 13

Zidanes and Ancelottis | sports

The magician

While Madrid was shuffling coaches, the Champions League final was played, a highly praised game that seemed like a mess to me. The winner hit a shot between the three suits (the goal) and the loser, two (harmless). The coaches were much more important than the players, hundreds of millions of chips that ran like condemned chasing the orders of their bosses. Tuchel took refuge in the strength that Chelsea demonstrated in the last four months and was rewarded. Guardiola was the victim of a creativity that I have tired of praising. Lahm, in a great article published recently, praised Pep and, among other things, said that he was a magician who invented positions. But magicians make them appear and disappear. And in the final, Pep made two key positions disappear: that of the defensive midfielder and that of the center forward. It went wrong and they killed him for taking the City, only, to the highest place in its history.

High and low profiles

No one will be able to dispute the good reflexes of Madrid, who did not let go of Zizou’s controversial letter. When we finished reading it, Carletto was already on stage. This is how, in just over 24 hours, we went from Zidane’s “a little disappointed” farewell to the optimistic welcome from another old acquaintance, Ancelotti. Two similar profiles. Good storm pilots, with clear speeches, peacemakers, good vibes with the footballers and the ability to simplify football that is more methodological every day. That’s how they are on the days they win. When they lose they are soft, sloppy in physical preparation and not modern. They are both authentic characters that do not change based on the results. What changes is the ambient mood, complacent in victory and accusatory in defeat. Sergeant coaches tend to have better fame, but if we make an inventory of titles, Madrid always felt better goodness and discretion.

Another year on the wire

Ancelotti and Koeman are the chosen ones. As coaches became the kings of the mambo, we are forgetting that soccer is played with players. Designing a squad consistent with the coach’s ideas is the critical success factor. But we are at a time when the great Spanish teams are forced to make decisions based on economics rather than sports. “As always,” you will tell me. Yes, but before they managed abundance and now scarcity. That this happens at a time when the Barça and Madrid squads are demanding a transformation adds complexity to the thing. Are you betting on young people who don’t know how such a big shirt is going to fit? Or on veterans who are free and still have some useful time left? In both cases, the price is to walk the wire.

Everything in your measure

The Copa América is escaping from two continental realities. It was going to be played in Colombia and Argentina, but the first country is in the middle of a violent social conflict and the second is scared by the covid that does not stop. Now Brazil is being handled as a possibility, but I wonder: did you know that the Copa América will be played in a few days? And that while we wait for it, qualifying matches are played for the next World Cup? And with regard to the European Championship, are you able to say which countries will host and host which teams? I have the diagnosis of what happens to you: a football binge. When I was little there was a humorous sketch program, and in one of them the baker complained because people always asked for the same thing: bread. The same thing begins to happen to this soccer chronicler: rotten soccer.

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