Capello: With Ibrahimovic, Pioli will feel less alone at Milan

Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s appointment as a leader at AC Milan is generating debate within sport circles. Fabio Capello, a retired football manager known for both his playing and coaching accolades, has voiced his thoughts on the matter in a interview with the Italian sports newspaper ‘La Gazzetta dello Sport’.

Capello believes that a champion player like Ibrahimovic becoming a manager is not an easy transition. According to him, those who command with the statement ‘it is done this way and that’s it’ are generally the club owners who have the final say into significant decisions. The former England coach stated, “When Ibrahimovic used to choose the best for himself, he must now learn to make compromises for the group’s interests, letting go of egoistic tendencies.”

Discussing Ibrahimovic’s new role of Senior Advisor, Capello stressed that his influence as a player for Milan and Pioli was positive and well-proven. However, there are concerns around Ibrahimovic’s leadership overshadowing that of the coach. Capello further expressed, questioning, “Will a figure who has the ability to interact with the team not eclipse the coach’s leadership over the group? And with the departure of Maldini and Massara, is Pioli considered so successful by the management that he needs a ‘collaborator’ or to maintain credibility with his players?”

Capello talked about what Ibrahimovic needs to succeed in his new role, recollecting how Berlusconi had him attend management and psychology classes. The retired manager said, “Ibrahimovic no longer has the ball at his feet, he needs to learn to impact in a different way, and it will take time for him as well, a kind of apprenticeship period. But Ibrahimovic will need to engage himself, study, and learn what to do. Being a part of dressing room and having a say outside is vastly different, and Ibrahimovic, I repeat, needs to be smart in managing his new role.”

Given Ibrahimovic’s influence and popularity in the football world, his transition from player to manager will definitely be one to keep an eye on.

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