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Club Cricket

Premier League managers as club cricket stereotypes

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

OK, so Pep Guardiola might have admitted, on a star powered Instagram Live with Virat Kohli, that he knows next to nothing about cricket. But what if he did?

Picture it: The football season ends. Manchester City lift yet another trophy on the Saturday, but cue the open top bus tour the next day, the former Barcelona playmaker who’s supposedly in charge of the operation is nowhere to be seen. Instead, he’s strapping on his pads by a sleepy village green, ready to go and grind out 20-odd and sup a lukewarm pint in the bar afterwards.

But the thought of Guardiola playing cricket isn’t enough in and of itself. The real question is, what sort of cricketer would he be? And we don’t mean, would he bat, bowl, or just stand about in the field, but which of the plentiful club cricket stereotypes, those that anyone who’s ever tried their hand at the recreational game will be familiar with, would he fulfil?

Thanks to Twitter account @ThatsSoVillage, you no longer need to wonder. They’ve put together the definitive* thread, assigning 17 of the 20 Premier League managers their individual roles and characteristics. It’s reminiscent of a thread from the summer, comparing England’s Test XI to their club cricket counterparts.

Pep is, in their estimation, an “elegant left handed opener with one of the best techniques on the circuit. Struggles when things don’t go his way. Coaches the juniors on Thursdays but gets white-line fever on Saturdays. Recently lost the vice-captaincy after arguing with an umpire.”

But our favourite is Jose Mourinho, who’s not far from being James Anderson in 10 years’ time. “Grumpy medium pacer,” is how they describe him. “Now playing at his fourth different club in a league of six teams. Bowls first change down the hill and makes the quicker 21-year-old run into the wind. Relentlessly abuses the batsman and his own teammates from first slip.”

The rest are below:

So there you have it. The question now is, what of Marcelo Bielsa, Scott Parker, and Brendan Rogers?

*Not really

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