Giovanni Galeone, the good teacher: “Teaching football is not about numbers, it’s about explanations. And I’ll tell you what’s missing today in Italy.”

Every four years, with the Olympic summers filling newspapers and celebrations, some athletes appear who go from semi-anonymity to glory. A matter of minutes: more or less perfect performances that are worth the medals at the Games and entry into the restricted category of athletes who have achieved it. It often happens in minor disciplines, thus defined by the unbearable habit of weighing the importance of a sport based on the following of the public. But so be it. That’s not the point. The thing is, if you are nobody, you become God for a few days. And take advantage of the media focus. And think about all the sacrifices made. And thanks go. Note: the first thanks are usually for “my teacher, the one who believed in me and pushed me to continue despite the difficulties.” Here: the first teachers, the ones who teach sports, who raise men and women to make them champions. We want to tell them this way: to understand their way of understanding the competition, to discover their methods, to know their anecdotes, to know from whom they have learned. There will be well-known and lesser-known teachers, expressions of disciplines with large or small follow-up. The only common denominator: they are the sport they teach and have helped to improve. (Pi.Gi.Ci.)


“I do not know if I was one great coachsurely I was one good teacher. I’ve always taught football since I was young. ” Go Galleonfour promotions in the Serie A and a football legacy that continues today on the benches of his students.

Sir, what does it mean to teach football?
“Don’t give numbers to the youth sectors anymore, but indications and explanations: boy, go right instead of left, straight and not diagonally, play long and not short … Once upon a time there were kindergartens teams had their own identity. and represented a model. Everything fell apart when they decided not to spend more, preferring foreigners to young people. Unfortunately, brilliant talent scouts like Mino Favini, who played with me in Monza, and Sergio Vatta also disappeared. Today in the first team there are defenses that do not adapt to play four because they are used to three. And right now it’s harder to learn. “

What can be done?
“In Belgrade, the youth sectors were fantastic. The coaches had great old masters on them who organized from above. “

What is missing in our country?
“There is no common way to play in Italy. At least once there was a bolt, now not even that. In Spain there is bullfighting and there before they touch the ox they do two thousand things. There are none in Germany, also because the ox would only be fired once. When Guardiola went to Bayern Munich, he won championships without success. Oliver Bierhoff, whom I brought to Udinese, told me that the German team was affected because Guardiola had changed the characteristics of the game and the mentality of the Germans. “

But what is the Italian mentality?
“In Italy we could have ours, we are imaginative and brilliant. Once in Emilia, where they are lovers of pleasure, they played a football that respected their characteristics. In fact, in Bologna when they played badly in the stadium they laughed, because they just didn’t accept it. In Pescara I identified with the city where there is a fun chaos. I couldn’t have put everyone in front of our goal to defend the result “.

Couldn’t Roberto Mancini create something new with the national team?
“He tried, it has to be acknowledged, but maybe we overestimated champions who weren’t.”

Galeone, was born in Naples but soon moved with his family to Trieste. How was your childhood?
“I grew up in the Servola district, where Cesare Maldini and Giorgio Ferrini were also born. We hadn’t even let the people of the city play while we were good, but then came the refugees from Yugoslavia. Shit if they played! They knew how to do it all, it was enough to give him a ball. In basketball they were better than us. Then I played Ponzana, fourth series. As coaches I had two real masters, two sc slaves, as we called them. Marino Covacich and Rodolfo Jachsettich. Born in the 1920s, they were also footballers. They taught how to play football. They had the ball in their blood as well as the teaching. “

Other teachers?
“Gipo Viani, a very demanding one. An ass ache that took care of the technical part but did not underestimate the tactical concept. I was his protégé. Another very good one was Udinese’s Comuzzi. Football was traditionally taught in Udine, in fact it won the Spring Championship and many young people ended up in Serie A. ”

You have established your residence in Udine.
“I live in Udine, but it’s too cold, so I stay in Pescara for a long time and then spend the summer in Sardinia. In Udine he has lost the habit of meeting other coaches: Ferrari, Giacomini, Reja and Capello. Edy now coaches the Albanian national team, he has become too famous, I don’t know if he still answers the phone. You’ve had a great career, Reja. It started as my second. When we were invited to talk to younger classmates, he scolded me for exposing my ideas too much. Save them for you, he advised me. Because this has always been the habit of coaches. Foreigners like Boskov, Liedholm and Pesaola were like that too. Menotti himself. The Brazilian Coutinho was the one who spoke the most. Once upon a time, you didn’t want to reveal your tactical tricks. Instead, I think talking is helpful. When I went to Coverciano I explained my offensive solutions, where to steal the ball, what kind of pressure to do and where to do it … “.

And do you have any students?
“Someone thinks so. Gasperini was just one of my players, while Allegri was with me for seven years and started as my assistant. In addition to Reja, I had as second Emiliano Mondonico at Cremonese, before he was a Great footballer and great coach, we had a great time, when he coached the goalkeepers he always put the ball at the crossroads because he had two fantastic feet and then I said to him: look “Very good, he understood the games. He was deeply Turin-based, with that determination that has always distinguished the grenade.”

Other names?
“Another good boy was Ubaldo Righetti, although he did not become a coach. I’ve had others: from Giampaolo to Bergodi to Camplone, where I saw tactics similar to the ones I used when I was in Perugia. “

Let’s go back to Allegri.
“Allegri also read games as a player. He was approaching the bench: we could hit him here and there, he told me. On TV I realize that I often have the same ideas even in the changes. Sometimes I don’t agree and I tell him but I don’t scold him “.

Will he ever go to work abroad?
“Max is lazy and I don’t think he’ll go abroad. He’s fine in Livorno.”

Does he look like the Galleon man?
“It’s not so nice, it’s quiet, it’s serene. Linked to your city, to your friends. Max likes to be from Livorno. The presidents thought it was life. He certainly had many girls, many were around him but he never went dancing, he didn’t smoke and he didn’t drink two glasses in a row. “

Did you have any Gaudenti alla Galeone?
“Baka Sliskovic No. He smoked and only drank coffee. He was a genius. Marco Negri perhaps: off the field he was a pretty good elf, full of verve. Andrea Carnevale also liked to live. Vincent Candela, fantastic person, champion of the world in everything! They were all professionals, I liked working with people like that. Real people, give me these and I’ll train them. “

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