The Dutch coach has urged those at the start of their managerial careers to put their own stamp on a team and not copy the work of others
Bayer Leverkusen coach Peter Bosz has urged young managers to implement their own style and not copy the likes of Pep Guardiola or Jurgen Klopp.
The former Ajax and Borussia Dortmund boss has been a manager since 2000, when he first took charge of AGOVV Apeldoorn in his native Netherlands.
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Since then, he’s led the likes of De Graafschap, Heracles Almelo, Vitesse and Maccabi Tel Aviv before his more high-profile posts at Ajax, Dortmund and now Leverkusen.
In what is his first full season in charge of the Bundesliga club they are currently ninth in the table after eight matches and, after 19 years as a manager, Bosz had some advice for those still learning their trade.
He told Goal and DAZN : “Be yourself! Try to develop your own style and not copy others. Do not be a Guardiola or Klopp. If you’re only imitating someone else, players see through that immediately. Develop a philosophy and stick to it.
“You have to learn, but you have to stay on your own path – and have fun. Without fun? Forget it!”
Bosz fulfilled a childhood dream in 2016 when he had the chance to learn from the legendary Johan Cruyff.
The 55-year-old, who grew up and played the majority of his career in the Netherlands, has long admired the Barcelona legend, who revolutionised football as a player and coach.
“In Holland he was and is the greatest,” Bosz added. “We had never seen anyone like him in the early 1970s.
“After returning to Holland, my brother and I absolutely had to watch his games. My brother was crazy about Ajax, Cruyff and Marco van Basten. So we always bought tickets when I did not have to play myself.”
It was at Maccabi Tel Aviv that Bosz had the chance to rub shoulders with Cruyff, due to the Netherlands icon’s son Jordi being the sporting director at the club.
“It was exciting. He would come over for every training session,” he said.
“Jordi said it was because his dad did not want to stay in the hotel all day with his mother! He really was there every day and we talked about football over coffee or food.
“In the discussions, I limited myself to listening. I wanted to know what he had to say, just let him talk and later analyse with Hendrie (Kruzen, assistant coach).
“In the end, it was the simple views and words that helped us. Sayings like: ‘if you want to score, you have to shoot’. Of course you have to, but it’s about not over-playing again and again. Shoot! Cruyff also said playing simple football is the biggest challenge.”