The take away from the end of Atlanta United’s disappointing season is the need for a new manager. From the team’s lackluster performances under Stephen Glass, it’s clear that he is not the best manager to lead the team to success. The latest rumor is that Gabriel Heinze is the frontrunner for the job. It is interesting to think about what Heinze could bring to the table.
A FAMILIAR PHILOSOPHY
Heinze’s soccer philosophy is similar and closely resembles the coaching style of Tata Martino- who is the most successful manager to date. Heinze loves to play attacking and free-flowing soccer, which is evident in the way Velez, the team he managed in Argentina, plays. He wants his players to have the ball as much as possible and press high up the field the moment the ball is lost.
In many ways, his style of play also resembles the philosophy of Leeds United coach, Marcelo Bielsa. Under Bielsa, Leeds managed to return to top-flight English football, so this philosophy can propel teams to success. With De Boer’s more patient and defensive style play, it seems that it wasn’t the way to bring out the United players’ potential. If the title-winning season under Tata Martino indicates how they perform under a manager who loves to play with an attack-style, then Heinze could very well be the right man for the job.
With a decorated playing career, Heinze’s personality can be a great way to change the club’s dynamic. Heinze played for European giants Manchester United, PSG, and Real Madrid, so he knows how to win and what it takes to win.
It has become a recent trend for soccer legends to take up managerial roles. We see it with Frank Lampard in Chelsea, Steven Gerrard in Rangers, and Andrea Pirlo in Juventus. All of these players are regarded as some of the best of their generation. As managers, they have also shown early glimpses of brilliance. Currently, Lampard, Gerrard, and Pirlo are leading their teams to dominant starts, with all of them competing in their respective leagues. Heinze’s personality and his career as both a player and coach will be crucial for winning over the players. Knowing what it takes to win is just another reason to have him on the team.
There are some things to consider about the possibility of Heinze managing the United. First, there may be an issue of longevity. Heinze has made it clear that he wants to coach a big club in Europe. This could be a problem because even if he accepts an offer, would he want to leave after a few years to go back to Europe and coach?
Another con in his philosophy is the personnel. In this style of play, every player should know their role and an attacking play-style can be risky. Pressing up the field makes the team more susceptible to counter-attacks and give up goals. With the defensive problems dominating the season, this can be a challenge if he does not get the right players.
We have already seen a lot of news go down at the end of this season. Players are coming and going, and managerial changes are continuing to be a work-in-progress. It’s clear the club was not satisfied with their performance this season, and there is a need for change. It’s great to see the club show that they want to make changes, and Heinze could be that one big improvement.
Time will tell who will finally be offered the job, but it is exciting to see what can happen during the offseason.