Giovanni Trapattoni: Il Trap’s All-Time Best XI

Giovanni Trapattoni is number 5 in 90min’s Top 50 Great Managers of All Time series. Follow the rest of the series over the course of the next week.


The most successful manager in Italian football history. Sounds good doesn’t it? 

‘Yeah, it really does.’

And to become the most successful manager in Italian football history, you have to manage some of the best players of all time, right? 

‘Yeah, absolutely.’

So, below is the creme de la creme of Italian football. The best of the very, very best. 

Oh, and Republic of Ireland, Red Bull Salzburg and Vatican City fans, don’t hold your breath, none of your favourite players make this XI. ?Sorry. 


Goalkeeper & Defenders

Claudio Gentile of Juventus

Dino Zoff: Eternally old, but also eternally brilliant. The oldest World Cup winning captain of all time, and won just about every thing there is to win during Giovanni Trapattoni’s hugely successful first spell at Juventus. 

Giuseppe Bergomi: An Inter legend, Bergomi was, to use the kid’s lingo, absolutely lights out dude, during the club’s title winning 1988/89 campaign. During that season he kept it real, man. 

Gaetano Scirea: Lo Stile Juve personified. Quite simply the most important figure in Juventus’ history, the symbol of everything good about the club. Oh, and a bloody great libero too.

Claudio Gentile: This Italian World Cup winner once kicked Diego Maradona so hard he ended up on the moon. 

Paolo Maldini: It’s a Top 50 Greatest Managers of All Time rule that if a manager managed Paolo Maldini, then Paolo Maldini makes it into said manager’s all-time best XI.


Midfielders

Michel Platini (R) of Juventus is fighti

Marco Tardelli: We all know Tardelli for THAT celebration, but Tardelli was much more than a celebration, he was also one of the best Italian midfielders of the 1980s. A prototypical box to box midfielder, the Juventus legend was pretty special on and off the ball.

Lothar Matthaus: Another World Cup winner, this time with Germany, Matthaus probably reckons he’s the best player on this team. He’s not, but was pretty damn good.

Michel Platini: Matthaus isn’t the best player in this team because Michel Platini is. By far. He is THE Giovanni Trapattoni player. The one who won three Ballons d’Or, three Capocannoniere, two Serie A titles, a Coppa Italia, a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup, a European Cup and an Intercontinental Cup. 

Roberto Baggio: Trapattoni loved a good trequartista, and Baggio was one of the best of all time. A mesmeric player on his day, he had some of his best moments under the tutelage of Il Trap.


Forwards

Paolo Rossi

Paolo Rossi: After his ban for his alleged involvement in Totonero (betting scandal, in calcio, I know, unheard of), Paolo Rossi came back as one of the best forwards in the world. He was so good in fact, that he won the Ballon d’Or and scored a hat trick against Brazil at a World Cup. If that doesn’t make you good, I don’t know what does. 

Roberto Bettega: One of the many players who hit another level at Juventus when Trapattoni joined, Bettega was a go-to for the legendary manager. Oh, and he might have the coolest name ever. 


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