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Peter Bosz: 'Play beautiful attacking football and win titles'

Publish on 31/05/2021 at 10:00

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New Olympique Lyonnais coach Peter Bosz, a proponent of attacking, attractive football, intends to continue the club's tradition of integrating talent from the club's renowned youth academy, he said during his presentation to the press.

The Dutchman, 57, signed a two-year contract with an option for a third late last week and front the press on Sunday to discuss how he plans to take the team forward following the departure of Rudi Garcia at the end of season 2020-21.

The former Ajax, Dortmund and Leverkusen coach - who as a player spent three seasons in France with Toulon (1988-91) - is known for following the great Dutch footballing traditions of fluent attacking play and development of young talent.

"If the young people have qualities, I am not afraid to play them," said Bosz, now at the helm of one of France's foremost developers of young talent, a club that has produced the likes of Karim Benzema, Nabil Fekir, Alexandre Lacazette, Hatem Ben Arfa, Samuel Umtiti and Corentin Tolisso. "Here, we want to win - and to do so in style."

Bosz was keen to put his cards on the table as he fronted the French press for the first time as a manager, and made sure everyone understood that he will be building his side to attack.


Peter Bosz, what are your footballing principles?

"I have a philosophy of offensive play, of attractive football, because we play for the fans and not for ourselves. But the way we will play obviously depends on the players. It doesn't make sense to talk about any system at the moment. I have experience in working with youngsters - and not only with Ajax, but also in Leverkusen with Florian Wirtz, whom I gave a chance at 16. It's always a question of quality. If the youngsters have the quality, I am not afraid to play them. Here in Lyon, there have always been good young players. There are similarities with Ajax. At Ajax too, there is offensive football. The most important thing is to win, but the way you do it is also important. Here, we want to win - and two do so in style."

How do you combine attractive football with the need to win titles?

"It is not easy, but it is possible to play beautiful attacking football and win titles. To do that, you need good organisation on the field. When I talk about attacking football, the most important thing is actually the way we defend. Without a good defence, you can't play offensively. You have to put in place an organisation that is rigorous (...) Communication is very important and I believe it will be very important with my players. The way to play must be clear and if it is clear, we can talk with the players. All the players have to develop further. And only in this way can you achieve something. That's important."

What do you remember about your time in Germany with Dortmund and Leverkusen, where things started very well before getting a bit more difficult?

"I remember well when I was in the Netherlands, you had to start slowly and then finish strong. In Germany, the opposite happened. If in Lyon we can start very strong and finish very strong, then that is my goal."

(Photo: ol.fr)