But now he’s on the other side of the chasm. The Everton job, he said, is not so different from what it looks like on the outside. “It’s exactly the same,” he said. The basic challenge for a manager is that all players want to play. “It doesn’t matter if you make a lot of money, if you are famous,” he said. “You want to play. That’s the good aspect of this world.
“I made superstars – Cristiano Ronaldo, Zlatan Ibrahimovic – but they are superstars outside the training ground. The atmosphere outside is what defines the superstar. In the changing room they are exactly the same. In the end, I have to manage people, not players. They are not players: they are people who play football. I am not a manager. I am a man who works as a manager. I think that’s an important point. “
As dazzling as a player’s talent, no matter how high their profile, however high their ambitions, their job is still to relate to them, to “manage them when they are sad”, to tell them to “celebrate their successes and manage their failures”. To convince her to believe in his ideas, to convince her to share her thoughts with him. This reciprocity is crucial. “I got a lot of my ideas from the players,” he said.
He is there to provide balance. Last season at Everton was a tortured one; he had to restore the faith (although deviating from the idea that he actually did it). Now that the entire club is in mid-air, he has to keep his players from getting carried away.
This is exactly what he did at Real and AC Milan and Bayern Munich. What is different now, he admits, is the context. In Ancelotti’s worldview, there are two types of clubs: corporate clubs and family clubs. It’s no surprise that he worked mostly in corporate clubs. The task there is to arrive and win.
The task is different in family clubs. “It’s about building something, putting your stamp on a team,” he said. “You live better, you work better in a family club. You can be more of yourself. The goal for every manager is to train the top teams. But fighting to build a top team can also be a great motivation. “