The last three UEFA Champions League Titles have all been won by teams with German coaches – two of them being English clubs. Liverpool coached by the now legendary Jurgen Klopp and Chelsea’s surprise win this year helped by Thomas Tuchel. They are now joined in the English Premier League by Ralf Rangnick as Manchester United try to revive their fortunes with another German coach. Rangnick, as our reader who shared this article puts it, is considered as “The Godfather of German coaches”, very highly regarded by Klopp himself as the best German coach. So what is it about German coaches that make them tick? Plenty has been written about Klopp and Tuchel. Here’s Rangnick’s approach in his own words – an approach that goes beyond winning titles, instead focusing on building institutions that outlast individuals, something we at Marcellus look for in our investee companies. Rangnick talks about his 3Cs approach:
“The first one is concept. This focuses on the importance of implementing a specific DNA into the club – particularly the style of football we want the team to play. Consistent orientation towards that style in all areas of the club was where we put our emphasis from day one.
The playing style should be highly recognisable – so much so that, even on a bad day, you can still recognise the kind of football that the team wants to play.
By doing that, you create an identity across the whole club. Not only with the players, but also the coaching staff and even the fans.
In the end, at both Salzburg and Leipzig, the fans identified themselves with the style of football that we were playing. This, for me, is a very decisive factor. Identity among the players, the staff and the fans brought everyone together.
The second C is for competence. We try to find the best possible people for each job, guaranteeing competence across the club.
It is key to have a competent and excellently trained staff in every position, and to challenge them every day to make themselves and the club better.
My network helped me in this regard with Salzburg and Leipzig – I already knew where many of the best people were, and I knew a lot of them well. Once I had identified them, it was my job to convince them to come on the journey with us.
The third and final C is for capital – or cash. There is no doubt that financial backing enabled us to implement the philosophy we wanted to start with, but at the same time it is by no means a replacement for concept and competence – it has to work together with these other fundamental pillars.
Capital is a limited-success factor. Alone, it is far from enough. What’s more, concept and competence, if you use them well, will generate capital.
The three Cs go together, hand in hand – and the chances of real success increase if all three Cs come together.”
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