The 22 Greatest Football Managers of All Time

Football is a game that involves lots of tactical planning and fine tuning of strategies. While players hog the limelight on the field, it's the managers who play an equally important role behind the scenes. Here is a list of the 22 greatest football managers of all time who have left an indelible imprint by their longevity and their transformative effect on the game.
Also Known As: Alexander Chapman Ferguson, Sir Alex Ferguson
Birthday: 31 December 1941
Born In: Glasgow, Scotland
Age: 82

Alex Ferguson is best known for managing the popular Manchester United Football Club from 1986 to 2013. Considered the greatest football manager ever, Ferguson has the distinction of winning the hightest number of trophies as a manager in the history of the game. He won 38 trophies while managing Manchester United for 26 years! In 2002, Alex Ferguson was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame for his immense contribution as a manager.

Birthday: 10 June 1959
Born In: Reggiolo, Italy
Age: 64

Considered one of the most successful and greatest football managers in the world, Carlo Ancelotti has won the prestigious UEFA Champions League on three occasions so far; he is one of three managers to have achieved this feat. Carlo Ancelotti was included in the Greatest Manager of All Time list by France Football and FourFourTwo magazines in 2019 and 2020 respectively.

Also Known As: Zinedine Yazid Zidane, Zizou
Nickname: Zizou
Birthday: 23 June 1972
Born In: La Castellane, Marseille, France
Age: 51

Many of us might know Zinedine Zidane as one of the greatest footballers of all time, but the former attacking midfielder is also one of the most successful managers in the world. He coached Real Madrid between 2016 and 2021, during which he established himself as one of the most successful managers in the history of Real Madrid. He helped the team win three consecutive Champions League titles, two FIFA Club World Cups, two UEFA Super Cups, a Supercopa de España, and a La Liga title.

Also Known As: Jose Mourinho, José Mário dos Santos Mourinho Félix
Nickname: Zé Mário, The Special One, The Only One, Mou
Birthday: 26 January 1963
Born In: Setúbal
Age: 61

José Mourinho is not only counted among the most decorated managers of all time, he is also regarded as one of the greatest managers ever. He sits atop an elite list of five managers who have won the prestigious European Cup with two different clubs: Inter Milan and Porto. In 2013, he was named in the Greatest Manager of All Time list by World Soccer. In 2015, the Portuguese Football Federation named José Mourinho Portuguese Coach of the Century.

Also Known As: Hendrik Johannes Cruijff
Nickname: El Flaco
Birthday: 25 April 1947
Born In: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Died On: 24 March 2016

Apart from being recognized as one of the greatest footballers and one of the most influential personalities in the history of the game, Johan Cruyff is also counted among the greatest football managers of all time. He coached Barcelona from 1988 to 1996, during which he helped resurrect the club and transformed it into a permanent powerhouse of European club football. Johan Cruyff also coached Ajax and Catalonia and had a major impact as a manager in the world of football.