Stats: Comparing records of Luis Enrique, Pep Guardiola and Johan Cruyff after 100 games at Barcelona
When Barcelona beat Levante 2-0 in La Liga this weekend, it not only propelled them to the top of the table with a three-point lead with a game in hand, it also marked a personal milestone for manager Luis Enrique. It was his 100th game in charge of the Catalan club and the win gave him an enviable record for a football manager.
It was his 80th win after arriving at the Camp Nou at the start of the 2014/15 season. When he replaced Gerardo Tata Martino at the helm after a season without any major trophy, Enrique was tasked with bringing the glory days back to a beleaguered side.
And that’s exactly what he did. With the arrivals of Luis Suarez and Ivan Rakitic coming into the squad, they went on to win the treble of La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League in the 2014/15 season.
What made the European win more remarkable is that they beat the champions of England, France, Germany and Italy on their way to the title. The trio of Lionel Messi, Suarez and Neymar had finished the season with finished with 122 goals and 66 assists!
Come the 2015/16 season, he would help the club add two more trophies. While they lost the Supercopa de España to Athletic Bilbao, they still took home the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup. The two trophies won this season saw them move past Real Madrid and AC Milan for the most international titles won in club football history.
Enrique won more games but Guardiola won more trophies
While a win percentage of 80% is almost unheard of after the first 100 games in charge of a top European club, he didn’t win as many trophies as Pep Guardiola did in his first season in charge. The Spanish manager’s sextuple in his first season in 2008/09 ushered in a new era of dominance in Spain and Europe as tiki-taka proved too hot to handle for their rivals.
Guardiola would go on to win 14 trophies with Barcelona before he left the club in 2012 to take a year-long sabbatical. But he would leave behind a squad that was good enough to win titles in the long run while also leaving behind a legacy and philosophy that would trickle down to the academy level.
But the seed of the club’s philosophy was first planted by the man who brought Guardiola to Barcelona along with other famous names such as Michael Laudrup, Ronald Koeman, Romário and Hristo Stoichkov. He took over at a time when Barcelona were in dire straits with players on strike and at a time when the Spanish first division was highly competitive.
While he did not win the league in his first season like Guardiola and Enrique, he would win four in a row between 1990/91 to 1993/94. However, it was his idea to build Barca’s youth academy – La Masia – in 1979 along the lines of Dutch club Ajax.
|Luis Enrique||Pep Guardiola||Johan Cruyff|