The coach and scouting

Article translated by Goog

We have explored in many articles how crucial the technician’s role is in a team, at all levels and in any category. Working in the field of scouting for a couple of decades, I realize how decisive the coach of a team is in the search for players in relation to the role that must be proposed.
The knowledge of the coach is fundamental, understanding what he thinks, what his priorities are, how he interprets football, knowing the module he prefers with his variants and the type of characteristics of the athletes in relation to the game sector, represent the bases to propose of the technical area brochures. So the fundamental step is represented by the coach’s wishes regarding the role to be implemented, which the sports director must follow up with the directives to be provided to the scouting area.
But what are the players who, after having been appropriately filtered with the individual work of the scout, with the cross relations carried out by the other observers, with the live view and with the final judgment of the manager of the technical area, will finally be purchased?
Leaving aside the economic aspect which, however, leads to the discarding of a series of players a priori and this is the reason why for each role to be occupied a series of prospects must be proposed and, leaving out the participation of the coach in the scouting work, which can be asked or not to provide his opinion – it depends on the relationships within the club and the strength of the coach – what are the reasons behind proposing one player rather than another?
It basically depends on the coach’s ability to improve the players that are made available to him! I give two examples of how the work of the technical staff helped to change the connotations of flawed players when they were purchased, but from the immense potential that the good scouts were able to identify. I am referring to Koulibaly at Napoli who in the first year of Benitez combined every game and that Sarri has contributed to making one of the top five power stations in the world and I am referring to Skriniar, who Giampaolo in a year at Sampdoria, made to become a real player. These are striking examples of the surplus value that a technician with his staff is able to attribute to the players who are made available to him. A recent example is represented by Rrhamani, a pure defender this summer and an athlete capable of starting the game with profit from the defense after a year of Juric, thus becoming the object of Napoli’s interest.
So the scout when he has certain coaches, not forgetting among these Gasperini, can “dare” and can offer prospects with defects that can be improved, on the basis of evident qualities that can initially obscure them. Even the scout with a technician so good at improving the players, can, based on the analytical knowledge of his coach’s way of seeing football, see players in a role and imagine them embedded in other roles or even sectors of the tactical project. A practical example can make the concept better: Atalanta has a “unique” way of proposing football, so, similar to the game concept developed by Gasperini’s men, apart from the Verona of his football disciple Juric, in Europe I see only the Lask Linz in Austria. And therefore, since you cannot “steal” players from these two teams, you must “imagine and hypothesize” a player in the context of that particular Atalanta scheme and way of manifesting himself, going to work on other aspects, such as the strength and running ability. External Czyborra recently purchased by Heracles in the Netherlands, I am not aware of the fact that he did the full-fledged exterior as he will in the new team, but the left-back in a team that defended four, but presumably the Orobic technical area deemed him suitable for that tactical project. To conclude, the importance of mutual knowledge and great feeling between the coach and the technical area is evident, so that the former can ennoble the work of the latter and vice versa, avoiding contrasts that can become insurmountable in the rest of the season.

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