Monday 02 January 2017, 18:54

The countdown continues: one week to go

Today marks exactly one week until the footballing world turns its attention to Zurich, as the curtain rises on The Best FIFA Football Awards™ ceremony. This milestone provides an ideal opportunity for to start the week by looking at the candidates for the 2016 The Best FIFA Men’s Coach Award.

1 is the magic number when it comes to this year’s Men’s Coach Award nominees. Claudio Ranieri secured Leicester City’s, and his, first top-flight title with their remarkable English Premier League win in the 2015/16 season. Leicester’s 132-year wait for a top division championship was just a few decades longer than Portugal’s 102 years - since ​the Federação Portuguesa de Futebol was founded - without a major trophy, brought to an end by Fernando Santos and his group of now national heroes in France at the UEFA EURO 2016.

Zinedine Zidane did not have to wait anywhere near that long, just 145 days in fact, for him to win his first trophy as a senior coach. Having been appointed Real Madrid’s head honcho at the beginning of the calendar year, Zizou wasted little time in bringing his winning touch in the UEFA Champions League as a player – having lifted the trophy with Los** **Blancos in 2002 – to the dugout. He won four of the seven games in the knockout stages, overturning the sole defeat in the quarter-final’s away leg to Wolfsburg, to seal his maiden coaching honour.​

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