Joe Cole: “I learned more from Rudi Garcia than José Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti.”

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In speaking with The Athletic and Canal+ this week, former Chelsea and England midfielder Joe Cole discussed his spell with Lille during the 2011/12 season, saying that he learned more from then Lille coach Rudi Garcia than with Champions League winners José Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti:

“I was 29 when I arrived, I’d worked with coaches like José Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti, but I learned more, tactically, from Rudi Garcia than with my previous coaches… We were trying to play like Barcelona, ​​thanks to the coach. In goal, we had Mickaël Landreau, the first goalkeeper I’ve seen that was so comfortable with the ball. I played with Pepe Reina, but Roy Hodgson and Rafa Benítez never used his passing game. We played for possession. That’s what Rudi taught us every day: keep the ball. I loved it.”

“I learned a lot about how to set up a team offensively rather than defensively… I was blown away by how good the league is… The overall quality wasn’t as good as in the Premier League, but technically and tactically it was top-notch, and it still is. For me, the French league is the second-best in Europe at the moment.”


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