5 managers that have excelled this season
A look at 5 managers who have blown their competition out of the water, taking their team to new heights this season.
Across Europe, this season has been a bit mental. Serie A is the only one of the top leagues that still has a competitive title race with Napoli and Juventus duking it out for the Scudetto, and 8 teams fighting for European football.
The Bundesliga started unpredictably, with the usual suspects, Bayern Munich starting slowly leading to the sacking of Ancelotti.
Few would have seen the title race unfolding the way it has in Spain after Real Madrid's spanking of Barcelona in the Spanish Super Cup. Few people could have guessed that Manchester City would be cruising to the Premier League title the way they have this season.
A lot of the teams doing well have been propelled by the tactical nous of their managers.
Here is a look at five of the most impressive managers (so far) this season:
#5 Maurizio Sarri (SSC Napoli)
It's easy to overlook the monumental season Napoli has had so far this season and the work that Sarri has done for this team from the South of Italy.
Not since the days of Diego Maradona has there been such belief in the team. Ask their fans if they could have predicted this and even the die-hard ones wouldn't be able to say with absolute certainty that with little over a month of football still left to play, Napoli would be just 2 points behind Juventus and 14 points above AS Roma.
The Neapolitans have the 5th highest budget in Italy and a squad that has nowhere close to the depth that Juventus and Roma possess. However, they have a man at the helm who Pep Guardiola rates as the best manager in Europe.
It's easy to see why; Sarri has taken a group of players that are not the most outstanding individuals and made them into a team that believes in themselves. He has improved Dries Mertens, allowed Lorenzo Insigne to flourish and given the keys to the defence to Kalidou Koulibaly, who hasn't disappointed.
For him to revolutionize a club with a minimal budget, a small playing squad and that has had more than its fair share of serious injuries to key players, it would be scary to think what he could do at a bigger club.