02 Aug Flamengo’s new rent Torrent has the Pep pedigree
Brazilian giants Flamengo had a style of excellence with Portuguese coach Jorge Jesus — and now they need some extra. The brand new boss is Domenec Torrent, who spent the 2018-19 in command of New York Metropolis FC, however is finest identified for the last decade he spent as assistant to Pep Guardiola. The clear hope is that a few of that Guardiola magic will rub off in Rio de Janeiro.
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The choice to rent a Spanish coach is each extremely thrilling and a little bit bit worrying.
One of many key dates within the current historical past of Brazilian football is December 18th, 2011, when Santos — spearheaded by the teenage Neymar took on Guardiola’s Barcelona — and had been brushed apart with ridiculous ease. Each the 4-Zero scoreline and the best way it was achieved got here as an enormous shock to the Brazilian recreation. What Barcelona did — a possession-based recreation filled with small, agile midfielders — had been thought to be out of date in Brazil, the place the dominant perception was that the bodily growth of the game made it essential to fill the team with tall gamers and go on the counter assault.
Within the post-match press convention, Guardiola caught within the stiletto. His team, he stated, handled the ball the best way that, in accordance with his grandfather, Brazil used to do. Torrent was on Guardiola’s teaching workers, and adopted him to Bayern Munich and Manchester Metropolis.
Brazilian membership football proved unable — and in lots of circumstances unwilling — to answer the problem of Guardiola. This helps clarify the success of Jorge Jesus with Flamengo — a triumph measured not simply by the nationwide and South American titles, however mainly by the best way they had been achieved. Jesus performed a excessive defensive position and camped his team within the opponent’s half, urgent after they misplaced the ball, and in a position to assemble fast passing strikes after they received possession. All that is normal observe in prime class European football, which has been so influenced by Guardiola. However in Brazil it was as if Flamengo had invented gunpowder.
Hiring Guardiola’s former assistant, then, is a crucial admission from Brazil’s main membership that the native tradition has a lot to be taught. There have been instances when Brazilian football led the world in tactical phrases — the nation invented the again 4, for instance. However, maybe sated by success, the native recreation turned lazy and must catch up.
However herein lies an issue. Not everybody agrees. Many Brazilian coaches and a few within the native media are clearly uncomfortable with the present style for international coaches. Chief amongst them is former nationwide team and Actual Madrid boss Vanderlei Luxemburgo, at the moment in command of Palmeiras. “Guardiola is extra advertising than coach,” he declared on a TV present in October 2016. Ought to Torrent fall wanting expectations, Luxemburgo will definitely not be the one one to have a good time. Many in Brazil will really feel vindicated.
Torrent has a tough act to comply with in Jorge Jesus — and lacks a few of the benefits of his Portuguese predecessor.
Firstly, he has much less expertise. The perform and duties of the pinnacle coach are very completely different from these of the assistant. True, he had taken cost of teams earlier than backing up Guardiola. And since then, in fact, got here his profitable spell in New York. However by way of stress and media scrutiny there isn’t a comparability between teaching an MLS membership and the most well-liked team in a football-crazy nation like Brazil.
Furthermore, Jorge Jesus might reap the benefits of an important and very uncommon commodity when he took over at Flamengo in the course of final 12 months — time. The home recreation shut down for a couple of weeks whereas Brazil hosted the Copa America. Jorge Jesus had a chronic interval to work along with his gamers on the coaching floor, and to check his opponents. Torrent, in distinction, goes straight into the deep finish. His first recreation is on August ninth, within the opening spherical of the Brazilian Championship, at dwelling to Atletico Mineiro, who’re wanting in wonderful kind beneath Argentine coach Jorge Sampaoli.
Assuming the nationwide league and the Copa Libertadores go forward as deliberate, the matches will probably be coming thick and quick. Torrent should get on prime of his new job shortly — and present outcomes each to Flamengo followers who’ve grow to be accustomed to success with type, and to those that will looking for to seek out fault along with his each determination.
That is the consequence of spending a decade as assistant to Guardiola. Torrent is already 58. He’s in a rush to make a reputation for himself as head coach. Flamengo supply him a quick observe to glory — and the danger of being derailed.