Maurizio Sarri is said to be a very private, dedicated, passionate, and just a little bit more than the usual amount of weird for professional sports, person. He almost literally lives and breathes football, a game that he’s loved since his childhood, played as a young adult, and for which he decided to give up a stable, well-paying job in the high financial world of international banking.
That uniqueness extends to the style of football he champions, and the style by which he champions it. Eccentric is a word that is often brought up to describe him, though it’s a quality that we don’t often see in public. But those who have known him for some time can undoubtedly tell a few tales. So here’s Jorginho with an anecdote, one of a multitude apparently.
“If I had to list all Sarri’s superstitions, I’d be here until tomorrow morning! I’ll tell you one: if the ball goes out for a throw-in, he refuses to touch it and won’t put it back on to the pitch. Mind you, the principles of Sarrismo dictate the ball should rarely go off the field…”
These sorts of things can take on urban legend status — did you hear that one time Sarri painted all his players’ boots black, or hit the same car in the parking lot with his own car every day while on winning streak? — but it’s clear that Sarri is a very unique individual, even within the confines of professional football.
“Sarri has a great personal story, but has always remained true to himself. He is a very simple and honest person.
“In tactical terms, his style of play is very attacking, but organisation is the key to everything. When we play, everyone knows what they have to do and it becomes easier for everyone that way.”
-Jorginho; source: Sky Italia via Football Italia
If he (and the team) keep this up however, he will stop being unique in at least one key area: winning trophies. He probably won’t mind.