Best Soccer Managers

A look at 10 of the best managers in world soccer

NYON, SWITZERLAND - JANUARY 24: Sir Alex Ferguson speaks during a press conference as he is appointed UEFA Coaching Ambassador at the UEFA headquarters, The House of European Football, on January 24, 2014 in Geneva, Switzerland.
Harold Cunningham/Getty Images

The only manager in recent history to topple the Old Firm in Scotland with Aberdeen, Ferguson has built a dynasty at Manchester United since moving to the club in 1986. Fergie has won 11 English League titles and two Champions Leagues. His 1998 treble-winning side is regarded as one of the most exciting to grace English soccer. No manager wields more power over a club than Ferguson who dictates at virtually every level. More »

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Jose Mourinho

Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho
Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho. Jasper Juinen / Getty Images

The original ‘quick-fix’ coach. Chelsea wanted a first league title since 1955, and Mourinho delivered in his first season at the club. Inter Milan president craved Massimo Moratti craved a first European Cup of his tenure, and Mourinho delivered in his second season at the club. He even won the Champions League with unfancied Porto in 2003. It is not just his success in Europe and domestically that makes Mourinho what he is; the Portuguese tactician is the most charismatic coach in the world. He thrills gathered journalists with outlandish comments and his histrionics on the touchline make him great box office entertainment.

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Marcello Lippi

Marcello Lippi
Marcello Lippi. Claudio Villa / Getty Images

It was Lippi's emphasis on team spirit and unity that helped guide an unheralded Italy side to World Cup glory in 2006. With Italian soccer reeling from the Calciopoli corruption scandal, the Azzurri surprised the critics with a series of inspired displays. Also a serial winner domestically with Juventus where he won five Serie A titles, and the 1996 Champions League.

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Vicente Del Bosque

Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque
Spain coach Vicente Del Bosque. Alex Livesey / Getty Images

Amazingly fired by Real Madrid a day after the club won their 29th league title and after winning two Champions Leagues in his time at the Bernabeu. It was a decision that devastated this humble man, so much so that he could not bring himself to sit on the balcony of his flat overlooking the club's training ground. But Del Bosque would rise again, and the 2010 World Cup win with Spain guaranteed his place among the greats of the world game and proved that you do not have to possess an arrogant streak to make it to the top.

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Fabio Capello

England coach Fabio Capello
England coach Fabio Capello. Mike Hewitt / Getty Images

England's poor performance at the 2010 World Cup has led to many in the country questioning his ability. But the statistics confirm that Capello's demanding approach to player discipline has reaped dividends in Italy and Spain where he has won a combined seven domestic league titles. His Milan side in the first half of the 1990s won four titles in five years and destroyed Johan Cruyff's Barcelona team in the 1994 Champions League final.

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Giovanni Trapattoni

Republic of Ireland coach Giovanni Trapattoni
Republic of Ireland coach Giovanni Trapattoni. Bryn Lennon / Getty Images

One of the most celebrated managers in Serie A history, Il Trap won six titles with Juventus and one with Inter Milan. He has also won the title in Germany, Portugal and Austria with Bayern Munich, Benfica and Red Bull Salzburg respectively. One of the more cautious tactical coaches, Trap has also won three UEFA Cups and one Cup Winners Cup.

Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola
Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola. David Ramos / Getty Images

By far the youngest coach on this list, but deserves to be recognized for the way he has implemented his ideals to devastating effect since taking over at Barcelona in 2008. The treble-winning 2008/09 season and the feat of winning six trophies in 2009 may never be equaled, and "Pep" deserves his place alongside the greats for this alone. He has ensured that the nucleus of his starting XI is Catalan, with many of his players having graduated from the club's famous La Masia academy. More »

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Ottmar Hitzfeld

Switzerland coach Ottmar Hitzfeld
Switzerland coach Ottmar Hitzfeld. Christof Koepsel / Getty Images

'King Otto' Hitzfeld has won the Champions League twice and the German Bundesliga seven times, with Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund. He was also responsible for one of the biggest shocks at the 2010 World Cup when his Switzerland side defeated eventual winners Spain in the opening match.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger. Shaun Botterill / Getty Images

Like Ferguson at Manchester United, Wenger is involved in the decision making process at almost every level. He has won three Premier League titles since moving to Arsenal from Japan in 1996 and is world renowned for his unique ability to sign players at bargain prices, get the best out of them, and sell them on for inflated fees once they are past their best. Wenger is also one of the chief exponents of the beautiful game, his Arsenal side playing some of the most thrilling soccer on the planet. More »

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Louis van Gaal

Bayern Munich coach Louis van Gaal
Bayern Munich coach Louis van Gaal. Paolo Bruno / Getty Images

The Dutchman may have the capacity to start a fight in an empty house, but his positive tactics and commitment to bringing through youngsters makes him one of the best coaches in the game. He has won a combined seven titles, including one with little AZ Alkmaar in 2009. Not lacking in self belief, van Gaal can be a prickly character who will bend for no one. A 1995 Champions League winner with Ajax, Van Gaal is now with Bayern Munich and took his club to the final in the 2009-10 campaign.