06/24/2021 at 11:43 AM CEST
The Danish coach, Kasper Hjulmand, has always been a declared admirer of Pep Guardiola, but in recent years it has expanded his influences on other technicians, among which Diego Simeone stands out.
“I really admire Guardiola’s innovative way of thinkingHe has done so much for football, “he admitted this Thursday at a press conference.
Hjulmand recalled that he has followed the Manchester City manager since his days at Barcelona B, and that he had already traveled there to watch his training sessions, something he repeated several times later.
In his early days at Nordsjælland, when he brought out this modest team from the outskirts of Copenhagen for the first time champion in its history (2011-12), he was known as the “Danish Guardiola” and he was a fervent follower of his style of play.
But Hjulmand (Aalborg, 1972) has evolved over the years and has opened up his range of influences.
“I also like other styles, other coaches, authentic teams like Atlético de Madrid. In their games you always see that they are well trained,” he said today.
The Danish coach had already revealed a year ago in an interview with the daily Ekstra Bladet that he was “impressed” and “inspired” by Simeone’s work and that he had spent a week in the Atlético facilities in December 2019 to study their working methods.
“It’s amazing what Simeone has done. His way of defending in the last twenty meters is of a very high level, “he explained.
Hjulmand admires the flexibility with which Atlético plays, its variety of schemes and its aggressiveness. And he confesses that it has served as a source of inspiration.
“When they face the big clubs there is a culture, a union and a collective, very important in modern football. It is a feeling of always sacrificing for the team, everyone gives everything. We can learn from that when we play against the greats, why not we will be favorites, “Hjulmand then told Ekstra Bladet.
The flexibility that Hjulmand admires in Simeone has been demonstrated in this European Championship, in which Denmark has managed to overcome the loss of its star, Christian Eriksen, and go from 4-3-3 to 5-2-3, placing the very young Damsgaard on the left side but with freedom to move on the attack front.
Denmark has seduced with an offensive football, which combines touch with more direct style. But during the year that Hjulmand He has served as a coach, he has also known how to play more defensively, as when he beat England at Wembley (0-1) in the Nations League.
The union and sacrifice have also been seen in the “Red Dynamite”, which has managed to recover from the drama lived two weeks ago in Parken with the collapse of Eriksen, placing Belgium on the ropes and thrashing Russia to play for the first time since 2004 crosses them in a Eurocopa.