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Nkorwana Jonas Mosehla
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Does age matter in football

05 July 2014, 07:24

Yes & No depending on which side of the field you are playing. Yes it does matter if you are a 38 years old Shoes Moshoeu, outfield player scoring goals for chiefs (2004) since you are thought of as old and excuse us “we are building for the future” and yes you go on to defy the 40 year mark.

And Yes it does matter if you are from South Africa and you are a 24 years old professional player who is still been referred to as a youngster whereas players of your age elsewhere are seniors in their teams and national teams , the nickname “Bullet” springs to mind.

But it does not matter if you are Pele playing at the world cup and scoring goals at relative young age of 17 years 239 days or you are Roger Mila jiggling at the age of 42.

 The age issue in football will rage on for years to come.

The issue for today is about the coaching department of the beautiful game.

To start with the youngest coach to win a World cup was Alberto Horacio Suppici of Uruguay at the age of 32, 1930. The oldest been the Spanish coach Del Bosque at 60 in 2010. To cut the long history short, since the 1990 world cup won by “The Kaizer” Franz Beckenbaur of Gemarny at 45, the age of the successful coaches have been above the 50 year mark.

The current top 8 group in this world cup (Brazil) have two 45 years old in Deschamps and Wilmonts of France and Belgium respectively, and they will be against the 54 and 59 years old in the form of Leow of Germany and Sabella of Argentina. This leave the 60 plus group to battle it out among themselves for the other two semi-final spots. Somehow we are going to have a 60+ coach in the semi-final, whether we will see a 45 year old in the semi and the final is a question of time(less than 8 days). Does age in football matter? more so in coaching the national teams in the modern game of futbol?  The interesting point: the older the coaches who won the cup got, “boring” is the perception about futbol by romantics (the spirit of Jogo bonito missing). 

Coaches who won the world cup.


Country of birth & country coached


Alberto Horacio Suppici



Vittorio Pozzo



Juan Fontana



Sepp Herberger



Vincente Feola



Aymore Moreira



Alf Ramsey



Mario Zagallo



Helmut Schon



Cesar Menotti



Enzo Bearzot



Carlos Bilardo



Franz Beckenbaur



Carlos Parreira



Aime Jacquet



Luiz Scolari



Marcello Lippi



Vincente del Bosque



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