10 Premier League managers ranked as players
Which of the Premier League managers were actually good as football players?
Being a great football player doesn’t necessarily guarantee one to become a good manager and vice-versa. Diego Maradona will always be one of the greatest players to have ever graced a football pitch but he will also be remembered for being a less-than-average manager. The opposite was true of Sir Alex Ferguson – while he is one of the most revered managers in the game, he isn’t regarded as one of the greats in Scottish football history.
Clearly, being a player and manager requires a very different set of skills and nowhere is it as glaringly apparent as the Premier League. While some were talented players who have gone on to managerial success, there are those like Jose Mourinho whose playing career was brief and not at the highest level.
Here’s a look at 10 Premier League managers and how they rank as players in their time:
#10 Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool)
Jurgen Klopp tried his hand at being a professional football player at a number of German clubs before signing for Mainz 05 in 1990. He spent most of his career there, spending 11 years at the club where he started off as a striker but started playing in the backline by 1995. He scored a total of 52 league goals for his side and went on to manage the club for seven years after his retirement.
Soon after his move to Liverpool in 2016, Klopp spoke about his talents as a footballer on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football. He said, “I was very average. I was really quick and a good header but that was it. Unfortunately, the ball spent most of the time on the ground and that was not my biggest strength.”
The former Borussia Dortmund manager explained, “I loved the game too much to stop playing, which would not have been too bad for most of my teams I played in. I enjoyed playing very much but I was not very good - that's how it is.”