Marco Materazzi calls Jose Mourinho 'the best Coach in the world' and reveals the five secrets to his success.
The Manchester United Coach is under the spotlight as he prepares to face off against Pep Guardiola's Manchester City.
His former Inter player chipped in on the discussion, although he prefers to avoid easy slogans.
“How can you talk of the best Coach in the world, when there are four that are more or less at the same level?” Materazzi told La Gazzetta dello Sport. “Jose Mourinho, Guardiola, [Carlo] Ancelotti and [Marcello] Lippi. And, just one step below them, [Antonio] Conte and [Jurgen] Klopp.
“I can tell you that Mourinho and Lippi are the best, in my opinion, not just because of their self-explanatory results, but because I experienced them from close-up. But I understood who Jose was before even meeting him.
“We'd just been knocked out of Euro 2008 on penalties against Spain. He didn't have my telephone number and I wasn't [Diego] Milito. It was possible that I was going to leave Inter. And I received a phone text: 'I'm waiting for you so we can start winning together'.”
Matrix was then asked to give the secrets behind the Portuguese Coach's success.
“Drive, cleverness, knowledge, experience and empathy.
“Drive: he can multiply energies. I could give you a thousand examples, but one from the Triplete year will suffice: we lost 3-1 against Catania, and the next day he slaughtered us all, from the strongest to the weakest.
“We look each other in the eye, suck it up and four days later we go to London and beat Chelsea. Mourinho can read your feelings, even the hidden ones, and get inside your mind.
“Cleverness: He presses all the right buttons, not just his player's. I've never seen anyone so scientific in provoking his opponents, so good at making them nervous.
“But he goes beyond. Sometimes he feeds on the controversy, but he always keeps the team away from that. He's the perfect shield.
“Knowledge, that's what he provides his team with on the subject of their opponents. After working on their tactics for a week, you know it all about them. And you can take to the pitch ready to make your game, and also to break theirs.
“Experience: Mourinho knows how to win because he's done that a lot, and that in turn is because he started winning so early.
“His secret was to start his career when he was young, with a Coach's mind when he was a simple assistant.
“Empathy: that's the first thing he seeks out with his team, the condition that is absolutely necessary to build a strong group, one that is united and has no cracks. That's what leads you to fight against everything and everyone.”
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