Arrigo Sacchi: «If money is not managed well, in a locker room as in any office it is a problem. For the championship, Inter remains the strongest, but Milan can do it “
“A lot of money, few ideas.” Arrigo Sacchi doesn’t go around us: straight to the point, on the contrary droit au but, as the French say. On offense, without playing defense, face to face: the philosophy of a life, on and off the pitch. «The elimination of PSG was sensational, but it didn’t surprise me. I’ve always had my idea about their project. Ancelotti’s Real instead played the perfect match. And even this did not surprise me ».
What do you think of the PSG project?
«Which is not a project. As George Bernard Shaw said, football is the art of compressing universal history in 90 minutes. In football, as in life, talent is not enough. How money is not enough. It is the group that wins, never the individual. The game and the organization are like the plot for a writer and the score for a musician. The secret of everything is ideas. Anytime, anywhere. And I see few ideas at PSG ».
Messi, Neymar, Mbappé, Di Maria, Verratti, Donnarumma: the Galacticos of the 1920s. Yet the Champions League will remain a mirage this year as well.
«Moral reliability, modesty, work ethic, generosity, enthusiasm. These are the foundations of a winning team. Not the names, not the individualities, not the money. It is essential to have a company that supports you in all respects. I was lucky enough to find Berlusconi at the time of my Milan ».
Money does not bring happiness, but it allows you to have the best. Not a small advantage.
«Money, if it is not managed well, with intelligence, in a locker room as in any office, is a problem, it comes back against you. If there is a lack of club and coach, too many salary differences and privileges often make locker rooms explode, because they create envy and rivalry. Does he earn more than me? So why do I have to run for him? ».
Paris also seems to lack leadership. Messi looks like someone who passes by by chance.
“He’s not comfortable. He also counts the fact that he is no longer a kid, age begins to feel. The champions of the past managed to compensate with character, personality. Less today. Maradona comes to mind. His superior intelligence allowed him to be central to the team even when he was not well ».
Are real captains missing today?
«Real captains are fundamental, because they show everyone the way to follow. Baresi had the intelligence to always grow, to always improve, to never feel like he was there, this made him a leader, this made him Baresi. When I coached Rimini in C1, poor Frosio came to train with a fever of 39. I have to lead by example, he said ».
Donnarumma did it hard. Were you wrong in choosing Paris?
‘You made a mistake in choosing the money. I also told your father and mother this last summer, here in Milano Marittima. He had to stay at Milan not so much out of gratitude but because it was the ideal place to grow. Never leave the places where you feel good. But he remains a great champion, I have known him since he was little more than a child, in the youth national teams. He will get up again ».
Only Juve remains in the second round of the Champions League. How far are we from Europe, as Italian football?
“We are approaching. But it takes even more courage. Inter in Liverpool played a great match, but they had to be more daring in the final. You have to be masters of the game and to do so you cannot have a supernumerary of players in defense ».
Are we still being too defensive?
«Football in the intentions of the founding fathers was born as an offensive game, it is we Italians who have reinterpreted it with an opposite logic. Foreign teams always play to win, ours still don’t, not always. The real lesson in Serie A la stanno giving the small ones ».
Sassuolo beat Milan, Inter and Juventus. Is it the surprise of the year?
«Yes, because Atalanta is now great, considering them a small would be a mistake. Dionisi lets his team play only and only to win, other than bolt. He didn’t beat the big three by chance. So also Empoli, Verona, Spezia. I also like Torino, it still takes some time but Juric is very good. The big ones have to learn from the little ones, it seems a paradox but it is not. Let’s come out of Italianness with courage and embark on a path of innovation: it can be done ».
For years there hasn’t been a much-fought Scudetto fight. Who win?
«Who will dare more, who will be less afraid».
Is Inter still the favorite?
«He has more quality, experience. But Milan can win, they are the most European team of all. Provided, however, that we are always a collective, this is the only way to compensate for the defects of inexperience ».
The Rossoneri paid for the injuries.
«And yet they are there in front of everyone. When they lose one through injury, another one enters from the bench and hardly anyone notices. I think of the entrances of Kalulu or of Gabbia, who played at the level of Kjaer. Pioli’s Milan play on a pure system, two defenders against two forwards. There is an idea of the game that, little by little, has been received by the collective. Should it win, it would be a historic undertaking, also due to the careful management of the accounts that the property is doing. Let’s say it would be a double victory ».
And Naples? The defeat against Milan was heavy.
“Pay for inconstancy and mood swings. We need a winning mentality, which, however, is not easy to create. But there are still two and a half months left, Spalletti has to try to the end ».
Juventus are the team in the best form, 14 games without losing. But realistically is it still in the running?
«It always is. Allegri is making progress. Now, however, he must not fail in the Champions League. His Juve, who will face Villarreal starting from 1-1 in the first leg, have invested a lot, but recently haven’t done much in Europe. Not even when Cristiano Ronaldo was there. It means that the collective matters more than the individual. On the other hand, I too won without Van Basten. The key in Europe is to play to win, as the National team did at the European Championship ».
By the way: what happened to the Azzurri?
«Mancini made a masterpiece, but then something had to change. As the economist and essayist Peter Drucker said: “If something works, correct it”. After the victory, the attitude to victory was lacking. They weren’t used to winning and managing success, which brings responsibility and raises difficulties. That is why I believe that after the success of London it was necessary to change something ».
What do you do now? The playoff is a creepy in or out. The second consecutive World Cup as spectators would be an epochal fiasco.
«Even at the European Championship we seemed done for. There is only one secret: like last summer, you need to be a team, a collective, think with a single head. Play to win. And don’t be afraid. I have faith: we will be there at the World Cup ».
March 12, 2022 (change March 12, 2022 | 07:00)
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