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Meet the Managers: FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2017

From Zidane to Ten Cate, the men eyeing Club World Cup glory

Name: Henk ten Cate
Al Jazira (since 2016)
62 years old

Honours: Hungarian Cup 1999-2000 (MTK Budapest), KNVB Cup 2006-2007 (Ajax), Johan Cruyff Shield 2006-2007 (Ajax), Arabian Gulf League 2016-2017 (Al Jazira)

Following his retirement from professional football in 1990, you would not be mistaken for thinking Henk ten Cate was somewhat of a ‘journeyman’. His 26-year managerial career has taken him across the globe, where he has managed the likes of Vitesse (Holland), MTK Budapest (Hungary), Panathinaikos (Greece) and Shandong Luneng (China) amongst a number of clubs in his native Holland.

Barcelona fans will have fond memories of ten Cate after he was dubbed the mastermind behind their success between 2003-2006. Under his tactical guidance and the managerial prowess of fellow Dutchman Frank Rijkaard, the side lifted the UEFA Champions League trophy and two La Liga trophies.


He joined Al Jazira for the 2016 season and guided Abu Dhabi Pride to the Arabian Gulf League title.



Name: Ramon Tribulietx
Auckland City FC
45 years old

Nationality: Spain

Honours: FIFA Club World Cup Bronze 2014, OFC Champions League Champions 2010–11, 2011–12, 2012–13, 2013–14, 2014-15, 2016, 2017, New Zealand Football Championship Champions 2014, 2015, Charity Cup 2011, 2013, 2015, OFC President’s Cup Champions 2014 and Lunar New Year Cup Champions 2017 (Auckland City FC)

Appointed in 2010, Tribulietx’s seven-year reign at Auckland City has been trophy filled. Under the guidance of the Spaniard, Auckland City have lifted a total of 14 trophies including; seven consecutive OFC Champions League titles (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017), two New Zealand Premiership titles (2014 & 2015), the OFC Presidents Cup (2014), the Lunar New Year Cup (2017) and three Charity Cups (2011, 2013 & 2015). Tribulietx’s outstanding record and trophy haul means the Spaniard will arrive in the UAE as the most decorated of the seven managers taking part in the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2017.

Tribulietx experience extends to international football also. He was part of the technical set up for the Canada Women’s 2012 Olympic team that claimed a bronze medal and now holds a role as a Technical Advisor to the Solomon Islands.


Name: Diego Alonso
CF Pachuca
42 years old

Nationality: Uruguay

Honours: Liga MX Clausura 2016 and CONCACAF Champions League 2016–17 (C.F. Pachuca)

During his playing career, Diego Alonso was a striker with a serious eye for goal. The Uruguayan started his career at Bella Vista in his native Uruguay, before moving to La Liga and turning out for the likes of Valencia, Atletico Madrid, Racing Santander and Malaga in a glistening career that saw him score 114 goals in 325 games.

Now a manager, Alonso arrived at C.F. Pachuca in 2014 following spells at Bella Vista, Penarol and Olimpia. In 2016, he guided C.F. Pachuca to their first league title in nine years and followed that up with a CONCACAF Champions League title, their first in seven years and the fifth in their history.   

He is regarded as one of the most up and coming managers in Latin America and will compete at the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2017, hoping to write a new chapter in the Mexican side’s history. 


Name: Zinedine Zidane
Real Madrid C.F.
45 years old

Nationality: France

Honours: La Liga 2016–17, Supercopa de España 2017, UEFA Champions League 2015–16, 2016–17, UEFA Super Cup 2016, 2017 and FIFA Club World Cup 2016 (Real Madrid)

As a player, Zidane accomplished it all. His achievements for both club and country have placed him firmly amongst legends of the game and is widely considered as the greatest French player of all time. In his 15 year career as a player, ‘Zizu’ turned out for just four teams; Cannes, Bordeaux, Juventus and Real Madrid. He made over 506 club appearances, with the highlight undoubtedly being his time at Madrid as part of the infamous ‘Galacticos’. On the world stage, Zidane received 108 caps for France, winning the 1998 World Cup and the 2000 European Championships.

Thrust into the limelight, Zidane is still a freshman when it comes to the managerial game – though by the looks of his trophy cabinet you could confuse him with a veteran. He took the managerial position at Real Madrid in 2016, following a two-year stint at Real Madrid Castilla. His success has been written into Real Madrid’s history, with the side winning back to back UEFA Champions League’s and back-to-back FIFA Club World Cup’s.

If they emerge victorious in the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2017, Madrid could lift their sixth trophy of 2017!


Name: Takafumi Hori
Urawa Red Diamonds
50 years old

Nationality: Japan

Honours: AFC Champions League 2017 (Urawa Red Diamonds)

Takafumi made over 290 appearances in his 11-year playing career with the likes of Toshiba, Shonan Bellmare and Urawa Red Diamonds. Following his retirement from professional football in 2001, the Japanese manager took up the role of Youth Team Coach at Urawa Reds, before being given the first team role in 2017 following the sacking of previous manager, Mihailo Petrovic.

Hori had an instant impact on the team, guiding them to back-to-back wins in the J-League and setting the foundations for a strong run in the AFC Champions League. Hori masterminded the Urawa Reds’ run to the final, which they won 2-1 on aggregate.


Al-Sadd’s head coach AlHussein Ammouta gestures during the Qatar Stars League soccer match against Al-Rayyan in Doha February 19, 2013. REUTERS/Fadi Al-Assaad (QATAR – Tags: SPORT SOCCER)

Name: Hussein Amotta
Wydad Athletic Club
48 years old

Nationality: Morocco

Honours: CAF Confederation Cup 2010 (FUS Rabat), CAF Champions League 2017, Botola 2016–17 (Wydad Casablanca)

A veteran of Middle Eastern and North African football, Amotta spent his entire 15-year professional career travelling the regions, which saw him turn out for sides including; FUS de Rabat, Al Riyadh, Al Sharjah and Zemmouis.

His first managerial role was as player-coach of Zemmouis, before taking the reins at Ittihad Khemisset in what was a four-year spell. In 2017, Hussein was appointed manager of Wydad and led the team to their second Botola title in three years. Following their league success and qualification for the CAF Champions League – despite being underdogs – Wydad lifted the CAF Champions League trophy for just the second time in their history and qualified for the FIFA Club World Cup 2017.


Name: Renato Portaluppi
55 years old

Nationality: Brazil

Honours: Copa do Brasil 2007 (Fluminense), Copa do Brasil 2016, Copa Libertadores 2017 (Grêmio)

Renato was a formidable forward during the mid-80’s and early 90’s, making over 400 career appearances, scoring over 130 goals. He was a Brazilian international for 10 years, making his final appearance in 1993.

Following his retirement, Renato went on to manage a succession of Brazil’s top tier clubs including; Fluminense, Vasco da Gama and Atletico Paranaense, before joining Gremio in 2016 – for what is now his third stint at the club in which he began his professional career.


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