Diego Pablo Simeone started his eighth season in charge of Atletico de Madrid on 2011 after Gregorio Manzano got fired. The best thing “Cholo” (as he is called), besides the six titles under his command, is of course, his stability. In the 115 years of history of this club, there hadn’t been a single manager who had managed to stay this many seasons in charge of the team, that’s something else, if you ask us.
His first thought was on that exact matter, his triumphs are nothing compared to the time he’s spent working for the club, the victory on the Europa League was a hard-earned win after losing two Champions League Finals. Simeone is a man who seeks consistency, values and continuity to move forward. To a club as convulsed as the Atletico, finding a project, with a manager that hasn’t moved (or wrecked the ship) is a bless. Diego Simeone is as of today, the eldest manager on “La Liga Española”. Nobody has stuck with a team for so long, the nearest one is Ernesto Valverde, but he’s worked for three different clubs (Valencia, Athletic and Barcelona).
On the Atletico, no one had ever achieved such a long time with so many awards in a row. Technically, he’s only comparable to Luis Aragones. Even though Luis Aragones commanded the team for fifteen seasons, he did his time on periods, at most he stood with the team for six seasons, from 1974 to 1980, and a second time, he stayed with the team for five seasons straight, from 1982 to 1987. Cholo is starting his eighth.
So far now, only Ricardo Zamora had stuck with managing the team, and he did his time for seven seasons, from 1936 to 1946, with colchonero (a nickname given to the Atletico on their beginnings, because there was a mattress’ factory in Madrid that used only red and white fabrics for their mattresses) according to Opta. The Argentine’s numbers are spectacular. He has managed 378 matches, having won 233 times, 82 ties and only 63 loses, he has 647 goals scored by his team and 268 goals conceded. He holds six titles, the same amount Aragones achieved. If Atletico defeats Real Madrid on the Super Copa, he’d become the manager with the largest amount of titles on Atletico de Madrid’s history.
Beyond Spanish Borders
Even though this record by Cholo is quite remarkable, it is not something happening only in the Spanish League alone. In Europe is a rare (close to unique) case, but it does happen. There’s Arsene Wenger who retired after 22 years managing Arsenal. Other than him, Cholo has only one man ahead of him, manager Stephan Moulin, from the French club Angers, who started his time as manager back in 2011. We’re talking about elite managers of elite leagues, the place everyone wants to arrive, but many find it too difficult to stay.
Other famous names to add here would be Christian Streich (Friburgo), who also arrived to his club on December 2011 (just like Simeone), Olivier Dall’Oglio on the Dijon (June 2012) and Sean Dyche, on Burnley, who took charge of the team on October, 2012.