Fabio Capello and Neil Lennon have both commented on the dangers of Coaches trying to mimic Barcelona’s style of play.
The Catalans have become renowned in recent years for their playing style, which is based on one-touch possession play when with the ball and tight pressing of opponents when without the ball.
For Russia Coach Capello, it is a style to be admired but perhaps not replicated.
“Tactically the new benchmark is Barcelona, but if you try to copy the style it is a big mistake because the style you can only play with the players of Barcelona,” reflected the former Real Madrid Coach at a League Managers’ Association meeting in England this week.
“But there are some aspects you can copy, the defensive style. When you lose the ball you go forward together to win back the ball quickly, never go back, never return to midfield.
“They lose the ball, they go forward. For me this is something new. But you need players with the talent of Iniesta or Messi, because it is otherwise impossible to adapt this style of football.”
In a similar line of thought, Celtic manager Lennon, who masterminded a group stage win over Tito Vilanova’s side in the Champions League, agreed.
“I think Barcelona set the template. It's a dangerous template because I think a lot of managers strive to play like that,” the 41-year-old reflected at the same event.
“I think you have to understand the culture that you're playing in.
“I think what we're seeing now in terms of the current Barcelona team and the current Spanish team, are probably the best footballing teams I've seen, ever, with Messi arguably the greatest player ever.
“So, that's what we all strive to be now. We can't all be that way, we have to cultivate our own styles.”
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