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Thoughts on the Champions League

For once I found myself in agreement with a Mourinho post-match comment. He said games turn on incidents as much as tactical systems. Courtois made a brilliant save for Atletico Madrid and then they scored. Much has been said of Bayern Munich being less effective with the possession game of Pep Guardiola after Real Madrid thrashed them. There was no defining moment that could go either way here, but possession football resulted in Bayern romping away with the Bundesliga. Their problems are less the style of football but two central defenders, Dante and Boateng, who were not up to or for it.

If you asked me to nominate the best manager in the world today I would go for Carlo Ancelotti who racks up silver ware wherever he goes. There is no definitive Ancelotti style: he is neither a pragmatist like Simeone of Atletico or Mourinho, or a tica-taca possession man like Guardiola. What he does best – and remember  Real were in a mess when Mourinho left – is to draw out the best from his players, buy boldly but well, get on well with his President/owner and win the games that  matter. You cannot really ask for more.

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About Rex Mitchell

Rex Mitchell is a Brentford supporter from childhood. This has not prevented him having a distinguished Fleet Street career as a sports reporter and later deputy football editor. A widower, Rex is a bit of a bandit golfer off his official handicap of 20 and is currently chairman of his local bowls club. More Posts