It can be hard to figure out the difference between a good manager and an elite one, but they tend to get found out when things go wrong.
It’s common for all good managers to have a philosophy and a style of play, but the best ones manage to bend their instructions around the players available, rather than trying to force players into a preferred formation.
It feels like Maurizio Sarri only falls into the good category following his time at Chelsea. He had some success, but there was just too much that went wrong.
The player most synonymous with his “Sarriball” system is Jorginho, where he sat at the base of the midfield and kept the ball moving. He probably did what Sarri wanted at Chelsea, but it caused problems with the fans and also forced N’Golo Kante into an unfamiliar role.
Jorginho has since gone on to impress without his former manager, but it sounds like the criticism from the fans took it’s toll after that first year.
He was speaking about those struggles to Fourfourtwo, and it sounds like he considered leaving after that first season:
“I’ve gone through moments like this at every club I’ve played for – this low moment when doubt can come and make you wonder, Should I just leave this place? Maybe there isn’t room for me here”
“But I embrace this kind of challenge and I’ve never backed down. It gives me more strength to work even harder, to prove to everyone that I can make it.”
He also went on to praise Frank Lampard for his approach to him when he took over:
“Honestly, I thank him for the sincerity he showed towards me in public. He didn’t have to do that, and not every manager does it. He’s a legend inside the club, so people listen to what he says. “
“From that day, I felt everyone began to look at me with different eyes and really pay attention to what I do; how much I’ve devoted myself to achieving the best I can.”
It’s not clear if he had the opportunity to follow Sarri to Juventus but you have to think his former manager would’ve made an enquiry, so you have to admire Jorginho for sticking it out and showing what a good player he is.