Each week, Guerrilla Magazine’s EIC, Justin Salhani, will bring you links to the best writing about football from around the internet.
Florentino Pérez is trying to recreate the glorious Real Madrid of his youth
Dermot Corrigan, Howler Magazine
Pérez grew up a Madridista. The team of his youth boasted artists: Puskas, Di Stefano, Paco Gente, to name a few. When he became president of Los Blancos, he dreamed of bringing back the elegance and style of the once-dominant Madrid team. Corrigan brilliantly evokes the nostalgia Pérez must feel for the Madrid of the ‘60s and how he sought to recreate it with Figo, Zidane, Ronaldo, and Beckham in the early 00s and again with Ronaldo, Benzema, Bale, Kaka, Kroos, and James.
Zemanlandia: the truth behind the cult
Blair Newman, These Football Times
Zdeněk Zeman is a man noted for his belief in attacking and entertaining football. “A 0-0 is boring. It’s better to lose 5-4, at least it gives you some excitement.” If you’re reading this Zeman, Guerrilla FC is hiring and will compensate you with entertainment, legacy, and a couch to sleep on. Newman tells the story of the uncompromising, chain-smoking Zeman with great clarity, allowing the Czech national’s character to jump off the page with such affect you’ll think someone is taking their smoke break in your cubicle.
The Five Months in Mexico That Shaped Pep Guardiola’s Philosophy
Rory Smith, New York Times
There’s been a lot written about Pep Guardiola this week. This isn’t even the only piece on his evolving philosophy. But it is a fascinating account on his brief spell playing for one of his mentors in the Mexican first division. Many rightly point to Johan Cruyff when citing Guardiola’s primary footballing influence, but a man you won’t often hear about is Spanish coach Juan Manuel Lillo. Guardiola called Lillo “the best coach I ever had.” Quite a compliment coming from a man who played under Bobby Robson, Louis Van Gaal, Fabio Capello, and, of course, Cruyff.
- In Vietnam, the Premier League trumps the local league (reminds us of our own experiences in Lebanon.)
- An interesting commentary on commentary. A data analyst writes a much needed critique of the analytical capabilities and tired cliches of former players.
- The best attacking footballers are coming from South America
- We don’t like MLS. But this statistical analysis questions the concept of finishing as a skill and it is interesting reading.
- Obligatory article on Theo Walcott being Theo Walcottish.
- Scouts in Spain are looking for athletes over artists and it may spell the end of brilliant players in the mould of Messi, Xavi, and Iniesta.