Javier Aguirre (Mexico City, 63 years old) has been on the bench for 26 years.
"I had to face Aragonés, Del Bosque, Van Gaal... The way of working, processing data and even the way coaches dress has changed", recalls the Mexican coach, today in Mallorca, after training Osasuna , Atlético, Zaragoza, Espanyol and Leganés in the League.
Change of shield, never personality.
Vasco Aguirre has once again built a tough team, which tonight hosts Xavi's Barcelona (9:00pm CET).
What has football become?
The old football, in which in England coaches were not thrown out, ended.
The fact that England belonged to the English also ended.
There are already owners from the United States, from Asia... Modern football has become what people want.
In Mallorca we have a fan zone where fans eat and drink on the pitch.
Stadiums are another example.
Match schedules, too.
Soccer on a Friday night?
Before that was unthinkable.
Do you like it?
I have to adapt.
If I want to survive I must have a staff that uses GPS and sends me information with thousands of data.
I have to watch 87 videos from different angles and with different actions.
Nostalgics and romantics, including myself, think that intuition, even feeling and experience, have value.
There are clubs that inform the players of the calls by email.
There is little talk with the player.
Sometimes, an assistant gives me information in which he tells me that a soccer player cannot play because in the metrics he is a little above the fat level.
And, when I talk to the soccer player, he tells me: “Mister, this is my ideal weight.
I will not fail you."
I was discussing that at lunch today.
They wanted to incorporate a Formula 1 system. And I said: “It's 11 against 11, there's the referee and there are four 80-year-olds who live in Scotland on the International Board.
The rules remain the same and I have not seen any team that plays with 12″.
walkie talkie ?
Luxemburg had already taken him to Madrid.
In football they have 20 assistants who are in the stands and they pass information to the head coach.
That's fine, but ours is another kind of sport.
It's continuous, it's 90 minutes in which you don't stop and the information can be given before or after, but I don't know if during.
Does it kill talent?
Many aspects have been automated.
And that is totally true.
Some time ago I read something by Fontanarrosa about a coach when he had to make a change in the game.
"You Domínguez, when you go to the left, go to the center, when you go over there do something else and when you are in the center, something else."
He told her 20 thousand things.
And, when he finished, he would ask the player: "Do you understand?".
And the footballer looked at him with a face that showed that he had not understood anything.
I repeat a phrase that a Mexican coach told me: "A lot of analysis generates paralysis."
You have to leave them.
This is not chess.
It's not math.
If a guy misses a goal maybe it's because he had a bad night or because the rival goalkeeper knew him from the quarry.
We are working with human beings who are unpredictable.
That's the beauty.
You cannot control all variables.
What is your password?
For me, closeness to the player is essential.
I have not lost it nor do I want to lose it.
But I surround myself with people from the new batch.
However, there is a moment when the debate ends.
I want Pedro to play instead of Juan.
There are things that do not appear in the data.
If Pedro has already played for the rival team or Juan had a move with the coach, these are things that can affect or help them.
I can be wrong, but I don't betray myself.
Group management, with or without big data, is still the coach's job.
Last year, when I arrived at Mallorca, there was a psychologist on the team.
I'm not against.
If a player needs it on an individual level, go ahead.
But it's hard for me to let go of the group to a psychologist who didn't play professional football and who doesn't have a coaching title.
When I see that the group needs a slap on the wrist, I do it.
Or the other way around, when you have to pamper them.
I am the one in charge of those stimuli.
We return to the topic of intuition and experience.
Why are your teams so tough?
R. They can say what they want about my teams, that they are aggressive, that they don't play well, but they will never say that they don't fight.
I would never allow a sports report to say that my team is grey.
There you kill me.
I tell all my players always.
And we put like bastards.
What happened to Vinicius?
R. I prefer not to say anything.
When Madrid comes to the island he calls me again and we talk about it.
Tell me about Barça.
With Xavi he has won a lot in defense.
And I mean what they do in a rival field.
They have conceded one goal in six games.
And Madrid has six.
It's not easy to get your hands on it.
He never was, but now he is more so.
They don't even let you breathe.
To all the good records they had with the ball, they have now added defending without it.
What happens when you see yourself in a meme?
In the end, it is a game.
Why are we going to be so solemn?
People are not stupid.
If you lose and get passed over, what are you going to say?
I try to make it stiff.
Is it countercultural?
R. It is very difficult for me to give tactical explanations in the press room.
I have respect for the people who do it.
The fan wants something normal, understandable.
If you speak beautifully and with academic words, the message does not get through.
I try to be badass.
Many times I say to my assistants: Why do we make it so complex?
Why do we put so much academic term that later the player does not understand?
What you have just said with such beautiful words is throwing away a center of all life.
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