In an interview published in today’s L’Équipe, Reims’ Anglo-Belgian manager Will Still has discussed his journey in football so far, as well as his impressive run at the helm of the Champagne side, where he remains unbeaten in his 12 matches so far ahead of facing Paris Saint-Germain tonight.
The 30-year-old, born in Wallonia to English parents, explains that once he realised at 18 he would not make it as a professional footballer, he decided to stay in the sport and took up a coaching degree in Preston, where he took on a role at the local club. He then returned to Belgium two years later, taking on analyst roles before his first job as a head coach with second-division Lierse, at the age of 25, but would not see out the season as the club went bankrupt.
After two and a half years as Hernán Losada’s assistant at Beerschot, he once again became manager. He then turned down a demotion to assistant again the following season, and Reims came calling shortly afterwards. After a brief spell at Standard Liège, he came back to Reims as Óscar García’s assistant and then took charge of his first game as head coach against Paris Saint-Germain, a 0-0 draw.
Asked about whether he looks up to fellow young manager Julian Nagelsmann (Bayern Munich coach, at 35), Still pointed out that he takes inspiration from various colleagues, with one in particular:
“I try to take the best from lots of different coaches: Jürgen Klopp, José Mourinho, Eddie Howe… But the one which strikes me the most in his ability to renew himself and constantly adapt over a long period of time, both in his management and in his tactics, is Sir Alex Ferguson, my true role model.”
.GFFN | Raphaël Jucobin
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