The Best FIFA Men's Coach Awards 2016


Claudio Ranieri

Claudio Ranieri has crowned a year of seeming impossibilities by reaching the pinnacle of his profession as The Best FIFA Men’s Coach. His Leicester City side were ranked 5000/1 by some bookmakers to win the 2015/16 English Premier League title when the Italian first took charge in July 2015 – the same odds as Elvis Presley being found alive. Ranieri went on to inspire his charges, instilling an unrivalled team spirit as the club claimed the first top-flight title in their 132-year history. As the 2016/17 season kicked off, the Italian guided the Foxes to the UEFA Champions League knockout stages, in their inaugural season in Europe’s top club competition.

The Finalists

Fernando SANTOS

An electrical and telecommunications engineer by trade, Fernando Santos earned a place in footballing history by steering Portugal to their first major title at UEFA EURO 2016. In getting the most out of a side built around its undisputed leader in Cristiano Ronaldo, Santos applied his philosophy of “strength and unity”, instilling genuine team spirit among his players. Tactically astute and methodical in his approach, Santos fashioned a tightly knit side that proved solid in defence and lethal up front. With his substitutes playing just as crucial a role in Portugal’s success as his first-choice players, Santos once again displayed his game management skills and an innate ability to deploy his players in response to the situation.

Zinedine ZIDANE
In his first season as a Real Madrid player, Zinedine Zidane delivered the club's ninth UEFA Champions League title. His maiden campaign in the Bernabeu dugout was no less momentous, as he led the Merengues to European Cup number 11 and became just the seventh man to win the competition as both a player and a coach. After being appointed to replace Rafael Benitez in January 2016, the Frenchman promptly set about turning around the fortunes of a team that had looked destined for another trophyless season. He may have fallen just short of overhauling Barcelona in the league, despite victory in El Clasico , but he more than made up for that by guiding his side to European glory.

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