WHY MICHAEL BALLACK SHOULD BECOME CHELSEA’S NEW TECHNICAL DIRECTOR
Chelsea are looking for a new technical director since Michael Emenalo’s departure at the start of November. There have been some interesting rumours during this 10-month period. Sometimes they gathered pace, sometimes they disappeared. And now there are back again, more serious than ever, with The Telegraph, The Guardian etc. all jumping onboard. They have been reporting that the list of potential candidates includes: Dan Ashworth, FA’s Director of Football, Roma’s well-known sporting director, Monchi and club legend, Michael Ballack. Three very different profiles. Ballack is the only one, whose name has been mentioned before, while the other are new additions to the list.
But why Ballack? First of all, as you could imagine, the debate is mostly between The German and Monchi. So, I want to make a comparison. Including pros and cons for both of them. Let’s start with Monchi. The former Sevilla sporting director is known for his reputation in the football world, for his ability to chase and to sign young talents and quality players, but also for his ability to make profits. Let’s have a look at some examples. At Sevilla, it was Monchi who discovered and then made a profit of 200 million euros from players such as: Jesus Navas, Sergio Ramos, Ivan Rakitic and a lot more. This policy brought its results. Sevilla won 3 Europa Leagues in a row during his time there. Also, at Roma they recognise his work, too. Despite selling players like Mohammed Salah, Emerson Palmieri, Miralem Pjanic, Radja Nainggolan etc. the former Spanish goalkeeper has signed around 15 players this transfer window, including Justin Kluivert, the son of the Dutch legend, Patrick Kluivert, but also Steven N’Zonzi from Sevilla, Javier Pastore from PSG, Robin Olsen from Copenhagen and so on. Upon till now, the signings have looked more than fine. But why I am against appointing Monchi?
Firstly, despite everything, the way Monchi has succeeded is sell one, buy one. Ok, the policy of clubs where he has been to may have been an influence, but my point is that this is his way. At a top club like Chelsea, this isn’t allowed. You must sign quality over quantity, you must have huge depth, which has to be full of quality, because the deadwood should be sold and you must keep your best players, in order to fight for everything. Monchi hasn’t proved to ‘suit’ this crucial, very crucial rule.
I know that some people may say ‘popularity isn’t the main criteria for a DoF’, but I have my answer. Just take a look at Bayern Munich or Milan. Both have brought in popular figures, Hasan Salihamidzic and Leonardo respectively. I know that the first one is way more popular to his club, but I think you get my point. My typical modern Director of Football is a linker between the club and the fans, someone who can put himself in fans’ position and think like them, understand them. I am not saying Monchi can’t do this, but we can agree that he doesn’t have the same fanfare as Ballack. Also, we should take into consideration that the one we are talking about is not just a known person, but is a club legend, a real warrior and someone, who has followed the club and the new developments step-by-step, watching the games and being at Stamford Bridge, too. Michael Ballack wouldn’t be just a casual sporting director, but he would be one filled with passion and energy, too. And if you aren’t still convinced, I am giving you another two reasons to make you change your mind: his ‘programme’ and attracting Bundesliga talents.
For the first reason, I want to say that if you have missed it, Ballack spoke very highly about our academy players in particular. Here are his quotes: “It's not always about the money to be successful it's also about the strategy. “They have a really good youth team that beats everybody. They have good young talent which you can work with. There is quality there. I have seen them myself there.” Doesn’t it look like as an audition? It certainly does. Isn’t it convincing? It is a ton.
The other reason: Bundesliga talents. The German league is very famous for the export of numerous talents around the world. Players like Andre Schurrle, Toni Kroos, Sami Khedira, Julian Draxler, Leroy Sane and even Michael Ballack himself have managed to catch the eye of the audience in their hometown. Now there you have a lot of talents from the young generation too, locals and foreigners, starting from Timo Werner and ending up to Christian Pulisic, starting from Correntin Tolisso and finishing with Joshua Kimmich. Young ages, big names. Wanted around Europe. Now, wouldn’t it be a source of attraction for these talents if a German legend approached them? It would. Some of you may say he lacks experience, but I can assure you that dedication, passion and love for the club would make Michael overcome this aspect.