Spanish Football Managers and Zonal Marking in the Nineties: From Wise Old Men to Football Engineers.
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This research aims to improve current knowledge on managers¿ professional culture and practices through the study of how tactical requirements, and specifically the introduction of zonal marking in the 80¿s and 90¿s, transformed professional football managers training methods, their professional competences and requirements. In order to do so, 23 semi-estructured interviews were conducted with Spanish first división La Liga professional managers and footballers. Spanish managers in the 80¿s enjoyed a traditional authority and disregarded formal instruction and knowledge. However, the tactical complexity emerged through the zonal marking system and the training methods evolution from physical to tactically focused generated a new kind of abstract knowledge and new pedagogical and group managing skills mandatory to achieve success and manage the group.