Portuguese newspaper O Jogo has published a story today about the success of former goalkeepers as managers.
The outlet compares former keepers to former outfield players, and in a slightly weird story, realise it’s all the same.
It was all part of the pre-match coverage for Porto’s Champions League game against Club Brugge, which is happening tonight. Both Porto’s manager Nuno Espírito Santo and Brugge’s Michel Preud’homme were goalkeepers.
And for some reason, O Jogo thought it would be an opportunity to interview the Wolves manager Walter Zenga, who’s one of the more successful goalkeepers to be managing a club these days.
But the Wolves manager wanted to make it clear it’s perfectly normal for stoppers to become bosses: “It doesn’t look strange to me, I don’t see a reason for it either. I wanted to be a manager and I am.
“I reckon it’s due to he fact that, in a team, there are less goalkeepers than players from other positions, it’s just a numerical matter.”
Zenga also said the goalkeeper “Is the one who reads the game better, because of his positioning, both on defence, searching for the weakness in the team, as on the attack.
“Even because the goalkeeper is a reference point in the dressing room, he’s the one who always plays. Lopetegui, for example, he also was a goalkeeper.”
The manager was also asked about the Porto players, but all he wanted to talk about was the Portuguese aces he has on his Wolves team: “I know them well, I have four in my team, João Teixeira, Hélder Costa, Sílvio and Ivan Cavaleiro, and last season I worked with Pedro Pereira, from Benfica’s youth teams, at Sampdoria.
“FC Porto always made and knew how to pick good players, they’ve always given great players to their managers.”