Ange Postecoglou has said that even though both he and Mikel Arteta set their team up to play on the front foot, their footballing philosophies are quite different.
Postecoglou, much like Arteta and Pep Guardiola, demands that his side press high up the pitch, keep possession and pack the midfield, often by using inverted full-backs.
The Australian, like the other two, has worked for the City Group, who own Yokohama F. Marios, and soon after taking over at the J League club, he spent a week at Manchester City’s training ground observing the way that way Arteta worked when he was Guardiola’s assistant.
The 58-year-old admitted that he could see back that the current Arsenal boss was itching to become a manager.
Postecoglou told Football.London: “Mikel, I spent a week at City when I first got the Yokohama job because they were part of the group and were generous enough to invite me in.
“I didn’t speak to anyone but I observed training and you could see then how passionate Mikel was about the game and that he was itching to get going and become a manager himself.
“We have a common acquaintance in Tim Cahill and Timmy was always speaking very highly of him both as a player and as a person. He’s had a different journey but he’s made the impact. I guess that’s the whole point of it. As I keep saying, there’s no real defined way to get here.
“As long as people keep an open mind, they’ll be able to find great people from all different types of trajectories to get to this point.”
Ange Postecoglou and Mikel Arteta are not the same
However, Postecoglou insisted there are some big differences between how he and Arteta set their teams up, insisting that it never works in football when a manager tries to copy a colleague’s system.
If asked if he knows Arteta personally and about the similarities in their approach, the Tottenham head coach said: “No we’re not close. The football world’s a funny one. There’s this assumption we have all this spare time to hang around with one another and talk to opposition coaches. It’s not what exists.
“In terms of similarities… I’m 58, he’s whatever. I’ve had 26 years, he’s five years into it. He’s managed in one country, I’ve managed in a few. I’m not sure how he’s got a great head of hair… He’s a lot fitter than I am. I don’t know mate, there’s not a lot of threads I can sort of join between us!
“I wouldn’t say we’re opposites. We’re different. Even in the way his team plays. Yes, he does have a very attacking philosophy but it’s different from mine and that’s the beauty of the game.
“That’s what you love about it. It’s why you can’t copy. If you’re an artist and you see a Picasso, yeah you can copy it, but it’s not going to be a Picasso is it? It’s the same with football.
“You can see that somebody does something really well, but don’t bring your own personality into it. I have great admiration for the way he’s gone about things and how he’s stuck to his beliefs. It’s a credit to him.”
Spurs Web Opinion
Neither Arteta nor Ange are the sort of coaches to compromise their principles, which is why the derby is going to make for fascinating viewing. I personally do not see us getting anything from this game but I am still excited to see us try to take the game to Arsenal and create chances.
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