The Spoiler Awards – Manager of the Season
When The Spoiler was a child its father used to be the manager of its football team.
Getting lifts to all the games and training was absolutely brilliant, but being substituted all the time because The Dad-Coach didn’t want to look biased was rubbish – it’s probably one of the reasons The Spoiler hits random strangers in the face.
Right, now that bit of therapy is out of the way, it’s time to dive headlong into a pit of sweaty, sweary football managers…
In England, you’ve gotta start with the big dog – Sir Alex Ferguson.
Despite EVERYONE saying this Manchester United team were rubbish, he still got them a record 19th Premier League title, to the final of the Champions League and to the FA Cup semi-final.
However, he doesn’t quite win our prestigious award. The United team were no way as bad as some people thought and the fact he pitted Ryan Giggs and Michael Carrick against the Barca midfield at Wembley has counted massively against him. In hindsight, it was never going to work, was it?
In the Championship, all three promoted teams have managers who’ve been bloody brilliant. Neil Warnock made some shrewd buys (some of them completely legal) to run away with it, Paul Lambert got a mega double promotion at Norwich, while Swansea’s Brendan Rodgers did a sterling job in his first season, despite being the 18th choice candidate last summer.
Porto boss André Villas-Boas became the youngest manager to win a European title and seemingly won the Portuguese league back in November. He’s broke all sorts of records, but he’s only 33-years-old and is very handsome so The Spoiler hates him a bit.
He also had a Porto team that was miles better than anyone else in Portugal.
Anyway, here – somewhat controversially – is our choice for the season’s best boss…
MANAGER OF THE SEASON – PEP GUARDIOLA
Yea, we know, there are definitely those out there who will say their nan could manage that Barcelona team and still win stuff – there are even plenty at Spoiler HQ who subscribe to that theory.
But they are all wrong! Wrong, wrong, wrong. Guardiola has won his second Champions League in three years and yet another La Liga title with a side that plays football the way chocolate would if it could kick a ball.
He made a mistake last season with Zlatan Ibrahimovic but quickly realised it and brought in David Villa to replace him. Villa may not have got as many goals as hoped, but he’s become an integral part of Team Barca.
Barca are the best team in the world by a mile and, The Spoiler feels, a fair bit of that has to do with Guardiola and his subtle but important decisions.
He also looks great in a suit.