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HomeUEFA Europa LeagueMendilibar claims Sevilla's succes is for 'all the coaches working at smaller...

Mendilibar claims Sevilla’s succes is for ‘all the coaches working at smaller clubs’

Sevilla defeated Juventus 3-2 on the road, defeating the Bianconeri in overtime, and advanced to their sixth Europa League final. But for Jose Luis Mendilibar, who was jobless two months ago, it is a first.

Mendilibar was fired as manager of the bottom-of-the-table Alaves 409 days ago, and the team was later relegated. Mendilibar has led Sevilla over Manchester United and Juventus and away from the relegation zone with only one loss in 12 games.

Sevilla boss Mendilibar saw it as a prize for coaches like him who have struggled at smaller teams for the majority of their careers when speaking to ED after the game. Mendilibar’s chance presented itself out of the blue, but he has already proven that he is more than capable at this level.

“This final is a reward for the coaches who have always coached teams that were fighting for other prizes. This shows that there are more coaches of this type, that with good squads they can do great things and it is a prize for coaches who are working at theoretically small teams”.

Regarding the actual game, Mendilibar claimed that Suso’s powerful goal from beyond the box provided his team the lift they required to draw even.

“We dominated, they went on the counter to try and surprise us. They go ahead and it seemed that they had already done everything. The equaliser gave us wings and in extra time we scored the second.”

Mendilibar praised Sanchez Pizjuan’s atmosphere

The entire stadium turned out in red, making the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan rock throughout the game.

“The atmosphere was wonderful, sensational, I had never experienced anything like this. I noticed the environment before. During the match I don’t know what happens around me. The applause at the beginning was amazing. I have told my fitness coach, Toni [Ruiz] this has never happened to us. Beautiful.”

Building upon his earlier statement, he emphasized the ability of managers who are not typically associated with larger clubs to accomplish remarkable achievements with the appropriate resources.

“I imagine that when these days pass, I will look back and say ‘we have achieved great things with a good team’. Because I’ve always said that, it’s the most technically complete team as players I’ve ever had, I’ve never had such a good group. It’s easier to do these things with such a good group.”

Mendilibar is unquestionably gaining popularity in Nervion, which not only serves as a recognition for coaches of smaller teams but also acknowledges those who have consistently performed exceptionally throughout their careers despite limited opportunities compared to others in the industry due to their background. For six years, Mendilibar demonstrated outstanding competence at Eibar, yet he never received acknowledgement from the larger teams in the league.

Ethan Dempsey
Ethan Dempsey
Ethan is a lifelong football fan. When he is not obsessing over the Premier League games, Ethan likes to read fantasy tomes, watch football documentaries and waste hours upon hours on video games.
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