Top 10 Managerial Rants

There’s nothing worse than turning up to a game and seeing your team play badly. But spare a thought for the manager, who has to stand on the sidelines and witness it first hand. Different bosses have different approaches to giving their team a ticking off, some, like Sven Goran Eriksson, prefer the ‘I’m disappointed in you’ school teacher approach, while others, most notably Sir Alex Ferguson, dish out the hairdryer treatment with a good old fashioned bollocking. Here are the Top 10 Managerial Rants:


  1. Sir Alex Ferguson – Many players over the years have witnessed the ‘Ferguson hairdryer’ in the dressing room as the boss never let a player beat him an argument. Fergie has had a few run-ins during his time at Old Trafford, see Jaap Stam, Paul Ince or Ruud Van Nistelrooy, but his most famous dressing room dust up came with old Goldenballs himself. Beckham was substituted during an FA Cup defeat to Arsenal back in 2003 after his poor marking led to the first goal. The Scot then went ballistic, kicking a stray boot on the floor, which flew across the room and struck poor old David above the eye, leaving him needing stitches. This incident effectively ended Beckham’s United career as he was shipped off to Real Madrid in the summer, but it wasn’t the first time Fergie took his anger out on unsuspecting dressing room items. At Aberdeen, he almost nailed Gordon Strachan with a tray of teacups and also while Fergie was at Pittodrie, he launched a laundry basket into the air, which caused a pair of underpants to land on a player’s head. Too scared to move, the said player sat there while his boss carried on raging, before Fergie noticed, telling him “to take those ****ing pants off your head.” No wonder Sir Alex’s teams never lose.
  1. Kevin Keegan – Think back to the 1995/96 when Newcastle United had opened up a 12 point lead over Manchester United and looked set to land the Premiership title for the first time. However, as the season wore on, United ground down the gap at the top, before the mind games went into full swing. Fergie, the past master at this, suggested that other teams wouldn’t try as hard against Newcastle. Having overhauled the Toon Army, United needed one final win to secure the title, prompting Keegan to finally crack. His rant below is one of the most famous managerial outbursts and must still haunt the former England boss to this day. Can we expect something similar from Roberto Mancini soon?


  1. Rafa Benitez – Another title race, another victory for Fergie and his mind games. With Liverpool chasing their first title in 2008/09 and up against their great rivals United, the pressure was always on. And it proved too much for Mr Benitez to handle. Walking into a press conference with speech in hand, Rafa could have delivered one of the all-time great rallying calls to his Liverpool outfit. Instead, his speech was more George Bush than Martin Luther King, as he proceeded to reel off a dossier of facts about Fergie and his United side. Focusing on Ferguson’s alleged bullying of referees and complaints over fixtures, Rafa’s astonishing outburst showed that he’d lost the plot. And unsurprisingly, United went on to seal the title.
  1. Harry Redknapp – A sharp witted Cockney, ‘Arry spends more time in press conferences batting down journalists with sarcastic comments that have endeared him to the footballing public. However, Mr Redknapp has been known to lose his rag on a number of occasions, including the famous moment when he was struck on the back of the head by a stray shot from one of his West Ham players at the time. A visibly furious Harry proceeded to lambast the player in front of the cameras. However, Redknapp’s most famous moment came when asked about his transfer activity after a game. Nerve touched much?

  1. Neil Warnock – Old Colin has been known to produce some classic whinges in press conferences, along with some rather amusing criticisms of players, referees or even fellow managers. However, his best rant came when he was cutting his managerial teeth with Huddersfield Town when they were battling to win the Second Division Championship in 1995. However, a trip to Shrewsbury proved tougher than expected, prompting one of the great half-time team talks…


  1. John Sitton – Perhaps not the most illustrious name on this list, but Sitton holds his own when it comes to ranting at his players. During one match whilst in charge of Leyton Orient, Sitton absolutely blew his top at half time as his side were 3-0 down to Brentford. He sacked one player, offered two more a fight and set the world record for the most amount of f-bombs dropped in a speech. Incredible effort.


  1. Joe Kinnear – Never the politest of men at the best of times, Joe Kinnear exploded into this astonishing rant just four days after being appointed as caretaker manager of Newcastle United. Launching into a pack of reporters over a news piece he disagreed with, Kinnear used 52 swearwords in just 5 minutes of interview and promptly put a ban on all media at St James’s Park. Unsurprising then that Kinnear had to hand the reigns to Alan Shearer on ground of ill health.


  1. Jose Mourinho – The ‘Special One’ has delivered some cracking press conferences over the years, some humorous, some bizarre and some downright whiney. One memorable occasion springs to mind, after another defeat to Barcelona in the Champions League, where Pepe was sent off. Mourinho suggested referees favoured the Catalan side, giving you ‘no chance’ when you face Guardiola and the boys. ‘It’s disgusting to live in this world’ proclaimed Jose, who sat there in his sparkling new suit, awaiting his next pay cheque of God knows how much.
  1. Ron Atkinson – Back in the days before Richard Keys was a raving sexist, he interviewed Coventry manager at the time Ron Atkinson after his side lost to Southampton, a defeat that dragged them further into relegation trouble. Atkinson ranted at the Sky Sports presenter, obviously irked by some of his comments, before throwing his headphones in a rather dramatic fashion. Unfortunately for Ron, this wasn’t the only time he made a blunder over the microphone, just ask Marcel Desailly…
  1. Mike Bassett – Fictional yes. But also hilarious. The England side in this film are 2-0 down to Mexico, so Bassett tears a strip off his players with an x-rated tirade Joe Kinnear would be proud of. This scene was apparently modelled on Peter Reid during his time at Sunderland, perhaps explaining why Reid has struggled for a top job in recent years.        

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