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Mourning: Infantino pays tribute to deceased world champion coach Menotti

Mourning: Infantino pays tribute to deceased world champion coach Menotti

Argentina’s world champion coach César Luis Menotti is dead. The football world is mourning the loss of a great man – including the FIFA President and an old companion.

FIFA President Gianni Infantino paid tribute to the late Argentine world champion coach César Luis Menotti.

“Many coaches followed Menotti’s vision of the beautiful game and his playing philosophy will be his legacy. César loved his country as much as Argentina loved him. He will forever remain in the memory of the football world,” Infantino wrote on Instagram. His deepest condolences go out to the Argentine nation, the Argentine Football Association and Menotti’s family and friends.

Menotti, who led Albiceleste to their first World Cup title in 1978, died aged 85. There was initially no further information about the circumstances of his death.

Menotti, the football philosopher

“César Menotti was much more than just a colleague, he was a friend and an invaluable mentor to me. His passion for the game, his tactical wisdom and his humility inspired entire generations of players and coaches, including me,” wrote the 1978 World champion and World Cup top scorer Mario Kempes (69) on Instagram. Lionel Messi (36), who captained Argentina to their third World Cup title 44 years later in Qatar, wrote: “One of the great figures in our football has left us. My condolences to his family and loved ones.”

Menotti, who like Messi came from the city of Rosario, was considered a football philosopher. Already with his first title as a coach in 1973 with the Huracán club in the Argentine league, “El Flaco” (the thin one) defined his style: “Offensive, clean, happy” – in contrast to a purely result-oriented game. He described this as “left-wing” football. However, his greatest triumph came during the tyranny of the right-wing military junta between 1976 and 1983. Although Menotti did not openly criticize the military, he let his rejection shine through.

Several clubs that Menotti had coached expressed their sadness on social media, including FC Barcelona. Before his coaching career, Menotti was a professional player. At the age of 80, he got a job with the Argentine Football Association and was until recently general director of the country’s various national teams.

Source: Stern

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