Managers from the United States are at a disadvantage when it comes to finding jobs in Europe, but Emmy-winning show shouldn’t be blamed
Hit streaming show Ted Lasso follows an unqualified American coach trying to succeed against the odds in England – and it has become a go-to talking point used to mock U.S.-born managers.
With Season 3 airing just a month after Leeds fired Jesse Marsch, the third-ever Premier League coach from the U.S., there is renewed debate about whether the show is harmful for future managerial candidates.
“I have to say I like it, because if I say I hate it I’m some elitist coach,” Philadelphia Union coach Jim Curtin recently told The Athletic. “I love the humanness of it. I watched the whole first season.
“I give them credit for being at least close to capturing the feeling in the locker room. They get that there are people from different cultures, a**holes, nice guys, there are wives who are annoying who are problems. That’s all real. He comes off as loveable.
“Do I think it’s set back the American coach 20 years? Yes, I do. We worked so hard to get to Europe and then Jesse kind of breaks in and it’s like… what a curse to have that show break out at the same time he’s there. You can feel it with [Jesse]. He seems so angry at it, but to go back to my earlier point, if you show that they’ll chew you up and spit you out.”
The sentiment there comes from an understandable place, but it’s misguided. There are far more significant obstacles for American coaches than a three-season comedy, including UEFA rules that make it difficult to gain necessary licenses and the Premier League’s avoidance of coaches from outside Europe, stemming in part from a stubborn love for mediocre but familiar candidates.
Allow GOAL to explain why there is no such thing as a Ted Lasso “curse”…
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