There’s always a big discussion in South America asking if a fancy European manager would be able to succeed working in a place like Brazil or Argentina.
Even though a few South American managers have been doing well for important clubs in Europe, no one can really tell how Pep Guardiola or José Mourinho would do at an Argentine poor club, with modest players, simple facilities and all that.
That’s why when Argentine newspaper Olé spoke with Huracán boss Gustavo Alfaro, the headline is all about Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.
Alfaro has once met Wenger, and the few seconds he had with him ended up becoming a joke in Olé’s story. He was the manager of Argentine club Arsenal de Sarandí at the time, with a huge difference between the two clubs of the same name.
The occasion happened in 2014, when the manager was working as a pundit during the World Cup. Asked about the job, Alfaro said: “Yes, from Germany 2006 that I have been working with Cadena Caracol and it’s something that I enjoy a lot. Now I’m going to the World Cup in Russia. It is a different world but, at the same time, similar to mine every day.
“I like to do it because it enriches me and because I see football from another side. Also, it leaves me anecdotes: in South Africa 2010 I was in an elevator and next to me I had Jorge Valdano, Hristo Stoichkov and Arsene Wenger. And I introduced myself to Arsene telling him that I was also the manager of Arsenal, but of Sarandi (laughs).”
Then Olé asked him if it’s true that he offered Wenger an interchange between England and Argentina.
“(Laughs) I would love to see him in Argentine football with his impeccable suit and his staff. Can you imagine? It would be a beautiful madness. It doesn’t lack my will, eh.”
We surely would love that too.