Chilean newspaper La Tercera today brings a really nice story about Francisco Meneghini.
The 30-year-old is in charge of his first club, Union La Calera, and is making his international debut in an Copa Sul Americana match against Brazilian side Chapecoense tonight.
Now the most curious stuff about Meneghini is his past. He became famous in Chile for being the ‘spy’ of Marcelo Bielsa and ‘video analyst’ of Jorge Sampaoli during their time with the national team.
That’s why besides his work at La Calera, Meneghini also had to talk a lot about Sampaoli and Bielsa, especially the Leeds United manager, after all the recent spygate controversy.
First asked if he has a spy in his staff, Meneghini told La Tercera: “No, I do not have spies. I think the times have changed a lot. That was 10 years ago. The technology has advanced a lot and I prefer to analyse the rival through the videos.
“I respect all the ways, but I do not consider spies necessary.”
Then he was immediately asked about Bielsa’s case at Leeds: “I think he was honest and he was very clear in what he said.”
Regarding the time he was caught in Ecuador spying from a tree, he said: “Yes, but there is a lot of myth. Every year, the stories are exaggerated, everything becomes bigger. The last one will be that I spied on top of an airplane and threw myself. In that case I was going to be close to the rival team to see if I could get information, nothing otherworldly.”
Quizzed if Bielsa knows he’s now a manager, Meneghini says his staff has let him know: “Yes, I have contact. Not directly, with his coaching staff. I know he is aware and he knows how grateful I am for the possibility he gave me. If it were not for Bielsa, I would not be here.”
And he says the manager is not so crazy as people say: “No, there’s a lot of myth. A character is generated through the media, but he is an elite manager.”