MUMBAI: FIFA World Cup is well underway and the host country, Brazil, has notched up their first win, beating Croatia on the opening day of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Joy, excitement and thrill - the feeling is ubiquitous among the fans during each battle; as their favourite teams and players play in the biggest football tournament in 2014.
Roaming anxiously on the side-lines, formulating and implementing strategy and tactics on a real-time basis and commanding the team, the national coach plays a key role in enabling optimal performance by his team and more importantly ensuring the only thing that matters – a win!
Naturally the media and fans interest and attention on national coaches is almost as much as it is on the players. With the World Cup now well underway, Google search trends reveal some interesting insights on some of the top national coaches in tournament history.
Based on Google search trends for past two weeks, here’s a list of the 10 coaches who are being searched by fans.
Looking to build on the success of last year's Confederations Cup triumph, Brazilian coach Luiz Felipe Scolari remains the most searched among the coaches of all the teams participating in the 2014 FIFA World Cup on Google. Luiz is serving a second spell as Brazil’s manager after winning the World Cup with them in 2002.
Netherland’s Coach Louis van Gaal is no doubt one of the finest managers in world football. Staging a humiliating defeat in the group match against Spain, he has already impressed football fans both offline and online taking the no. 2 spot on the list.
Coratian Coach Niko Kovac appointed last October has been successful in getting the right connect with the fans and players. Kovac who stood at third position on search popularity appeared in three World Cups as a player and captained Croatia in 2006.
The US men’s soccer national team may not be among the top 10. However US team’s Jurgan Klinsmann is the fourth most searched coach with his constant attempt to overhaul this USA side. Appointed in 2011 as the Coach of the USA national football team, Klinsmann was a key member of the West Germany side that won the 1990 World Cup.
Following their group stage exit in the 2010 World Cup, Italy has worked a long way under Coach Cesare Prandelli. Ranking fifth on the search populairty chart he recently signed a two-year contract extension that will take him through to Euro 2016 with the team.
Others leading coaches who peaked on the online front with high search popularity included Joachim Low, Coach German Football team followed by Mexico’s national coach Miguel Herrera and Spanish coach Vicente del Bosque. Colombian Coach Jose Pekerman and English Coach Roy Hodgson.
Interestingly, the coaches largely do not hail from the countries they are coaching. Eighteen of the 32 teams have coaches from their own country. Fourteen teams are in the hands of foreigners.