Mon 22 November 2021 | 13:00

Top facts about Luis Menotti, El Flaco

Cesar Luis Menotti was the manager who blended tactics, politics and philosophy to win the 1978 World Cup with Argentina. Read on to find out more facts about Cesar Luis Menotti, the head coach of La Albiceleste in 1974.

César Luis Menotti (born November 5, 1938 in Rosario) is a former Argentine football player and coach. He led the

Argentine national team

to the title at the 1978 World Cup in his own country. In his homeland he is called El Flaco ("the slim one").

Cesar Luis Menotti’s age

is 83. Here you can find out the most important facts about Cesar Luis Menotti, the legendary coach.

The first fact about Luis Menotti is that he was a striker during his playing days, most notably for Argentine teams Rosario Central and Boca Juniors.

Menotti made his Primera División debut in 1960 with Rosario Central, after playing a few games for the reserve club. On July 3, he made his professional debut against

Boca Juniors

, winning 3–1.

An important fact about Luis Menotti is that he spent four seasons with Rosario Central before being moved to Racing in 1964 and then to Boca Juniors in 1965, where he won his first trophy as a player, the Primera División in 1965. Menotti joined the New York Generals of the North American Soccer League two years later.

Menotti was moved to Santos FC in 1968, where he played with Pelé and won the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A, Intercontinental Supercup, and Campeonato Paulista in the same year. Menotti joined with Clube Atlético Juventus after his time with Santos, and he retired from sport in 1970.

In 2011, Menotti has had a growth removed from his right lung. El Flaco (the Thin One) has been one of the football's great smokers, a man whose face seemed somehow incomplete without a cigarette protruding from his lips.

Top facts about Cesar Luis Menotti:

A notable

fact about Cesar Luis Menotti

is that he made friends with Coach Miguel "Gitano" Juárez after retiring from football, and the two flew to Mexico for the 1970 FIFA World Cup. He chose to become a coach after being inspired by his buddy Pelé's Brazilian style of play. Menotti was Juárez's assistant coach at Newell's Old Boys.

Cesar Luis Menotti early life


Luis Menotti’s childhood

, it should be mentioned that according to his own statements, César Menotti was born on October 22, 1938, but was registered as born on November 5 by his father, so that is the date that appears in his personal documents.

Speaking about

Luis Menotti’s parents

, he was the son of a doctor from Rosario grew up in the Fisherton borough and began playing football at the local club Unión América.

Cesar Luis Menotti personal life

It was often rumored that Menotti demonstratively refused to shake hands with the then President of the Argentine Military Government, General Jorge Rafael Videla, after winning the title in 1978. However, this has not been proven and was never claimed by Menotti himself.

In his distancing from the military junta, which exploited the 1978 World Cup for propaganda purposes, he went even further by describing winning the title in a television interview with the words "My players have defeated the dictatorship of tactics and the terror of the systems”.

On the other hand, the junta hadprobably paved the way to the final by bribing the team from Peru in the second round - a process for which the British journalist Simon Kuper, among others, had gathered evidence.

In 2009, César Luis Menotti received the Walther Bensemann Prize from the German Academy for Football Culture for his commitment and social responsibility.

Cesar Luis Menotti professional career

Cesar Luis Menotti was appointed as the head coach of Argentina in 1974, and became known for forging his own unique way in coaching, as well as chain smoking his way through each and every match.

He enjoyed spells as the coach of


, Boca Juniors, Independiente, River Plate and Atletico Madrid to name but a few, and took charge of the Mexican national team in the early 1990s, rebuilding the side after their disqualification from the 1990 World Cup.

Cesar Luis Menotti playing career

From 1960 he played for the first division club Rosario Central; he made his debut in the Argentine Primera División on July 3, 1960 in a 3-1 win against Boca Juniors. He worked for the team from his hometown for four seasons before going to the Racing Club in Avellaneda for one season.

In 1965 he moved to the Boca Juniors. With the capital team, he won in the storm or in the attacking midfield usable player in his first season the championship. After 1967, he played in the USA and Brazil before becoming a coach in 1970.

Cesar Luis Menotti coaching career

After coaching the Newell's Old Boys in Rosario and CA Huracán, 1973 Argentine champion, Menotti was coach of the Argentine national team in 1974. This had struggled through the preliminary round at the 1974 World Cup in Germany and was defeated by Brazil in the second final round and clearly put in their place by the


(0: 4).

For the World Cup in your own country, you needed a sense of achievement and consequently a new structure. Menotti faced great difficulties: the big clubs from Buenos Aires, Boca Juniors and River Plate, refused in 1975 their players for the national team and so Menotti had to fall back on other clubs.

An important

fact about Luis Menotti

is that he formed a team essentially from players who came from the provinces of Santa Fé and Córdoba: Luis Galván, Osvaldo Ardiles, Américo Gallego, Mario Kempes and Leopoldo Luque. Hugo Gatti, Daniel Killer and his brother Mario, Miguel Oviedo and Daniel Valencia stayed in the national team.

A notable fact about Luis Menotti is that he discovered the talent Houseman and the defensive Daniel Passarella who later became the captain of the national team. Before the World Cup, he had to limit his squad to 22 men and did without Humberto Rafael Bravo, Víctor Bottaniz and the 17-year-old talented

Diego Maradona


Argentina finally won the World Cup, the 6-0 defeat of the Peruvians against the Argentinians, which enabled them to reach the finals, being one of the most controversial games in football history. In 1979 Menotti watched the Junior World Championship won by Argentina thanks to the formidable Diego Maradona.

Maradona was to become the heart of the national team with which Menotti wanted to defend the title in 1982. In 1980 Argentina took part in the Mundialito in Uruguay. There they defeated European champions Germany and played a draw against the Brazilians. Because of the poorer goal difference, they were eliminated undefeated.

At the 1982 World Cup in Spain, Menotti started with the same line of defense as in 1978. He renewed the offensive with Maradona, Juan Barbas, Ramón Díaz and Jorge Valdano. The tournament was unfortunate for the Argentines.

The tournament and the preparation for the tournament were overshadowed by the Falklands War, in which 655 Argentines lost their lives. The World Cup began on June 13th and Argentina signed the deed of surrender on June 14th. The Menotti’s team reached the second final round, where they met the top favorites from Brazil and the eventual world champion


. Argentina lost both games.

Italy put the man marker Claudio Gentileon Maradona, who took this out of the game with legal and illegal means.

A year later, Menotti resigned from the office of national coach. From 1983 to 1991 he worked for various clubs in South America and Europe. So, Menotti won with FC Barcelona, the Copa del Rey (1983), the Spanish League Cup (1983) and the Spanish Super Cup (1984).

An important fact about Luis Menotti is that he then worked for a year and a half as the coach of the Mexican national team. From the beginning of August 1990 until April 27, 1991 he was coach of Peñarol in Montevideo. After another club stations, he returned in 2002 as a coach for his hometown club Rosario Centralreturn.

Between August 2006 and January 2008 Menotti was again active in Mexico; at the first division UAG Tecos in Guadalajara he resigned on January 7, 2008.

Cesar Luis Menotti personality

A notable fact about Luis Menotti is that he propagates a philosophy of left football that is not only based on victory, but also on beauty and aesthetics. Menotti: "In football of the left, we don't just play to win, but to get better, to feel joy, to experience a festival, to grow as people." The founders of the progressive Swiss Football Association also took Menotti's ideas as models.

Cesar Luis Menotti legacy

Argentina's football has undoubtedly seen better days in 1974. The national team had just been eliminated from the World Cup in Germany after being thoroughly humiliated and outplayed by Total Football, a new football idea at the time.

Vladislao Cap's team had been thrashed 4-0 at Gelsenkirchen by Rinus Michels' elegant and marvelously effective Dutch side, receiving a grim assessment of their present position in the game as a result of

Johan Cruyff

and co.'s prowess. You have every right to be angry if you were an Argentine at the time.

Argentina was not a very attractive country at the time. They were rough, muscular people who excelled in gamesmanship rather than showmanship.

Argentina were uninspired and without of a reaction when they were exposed to a relentless, brutal attacking machine like the Netherlands, guided yet hampered by the Osvaldo Zubelda school of thinking, which emerged from his seminal spell as Estudiantes coach in the late 1960s.

César Luis Menotti, the exotic, bright idealist of a man who staged a scorching comeback in Argentine football, was that revolutionary force. El Flaco (The Slim One) was a breath of fresh air and a bold move. If you saw Menotti on the train, you'd believe he was one of those rare breeds of university lecturer: intelligent but not pretentious, aloof but not completely stupid.

He might have been 20 minutes late and no one would have noticed since his countenance remained phlegmatic as he pulled another cigarette from his coat pocket. Most people weren't fooled by his wavy black hair, sideburns, and piercing blue eyes.

Inside football, he was known as a metaphysical presence; he didn't have a towering physical presence, but he interacted with his players via radical and reasoned thinking, rather than overt remonstrations. He was a football thinker, a part-romantic, and a tactical scholar who innately thought that football should be played with an aggressive focus.

It happened to work for him as well. Menotti was the first man to bring the World Cup to Argentina, and he did it by playing beautiful, aggressive soccer.

Menotti's Argentina was on top of the globe four years after being beaten and battered by the Dutch, overcoming their tormentors from 1974 in Buenos Aires.

In just four years, Menotti had led Argentina from the brink of relegation to a position of dominance, looking down on the rest and reinforcing the belief that they truly belonged in the middle of the Estadio Monumental, hoisting the Jules Rimet trophy aloft, rather than catching an early flight home after being thrashed by a vastly superior European opponent.

Menotti did not appear out of nowhere. Until assuming the national team post, he had been a respected and powerful coach in his own country for some years, and he had an unremarkable playing career before retiring in 1969.

The young strategist traveled to Mexico for the 1970 World Cup only a year later. There, he fell in love with a different South American country's football — Brazil. Yes, that gleamingly great Seleço side captivated a deep-thinking Menotti, moulding his beliefs and inventing a coaching technique that would serve him well.

Brazil constructed an envy template for how football should be played in Mexico, culminating in that masterpiece of a performance in the final, beating Italy 4-1 – and it struck a chord with Menotti, who, like so many others, thought his team should have been there.

Menotti's meteoric rise to the top of the tactical world began in 1973, when his Huracán team won Argentina's Metropolitano title. They were a squad so beautiful and exquisite, as Jonathan Wilson noted in his great homage to El Flaco, that they were cheered by opposition supporters, as they were when they thrashed Rosario Central 5-0.

In same Wilson story, forward Carlos Babington is reported as stating, "There were gambetas, one-touch moves, nutmegs, sombreros, one-twos, overlaps."

Those aren't the meaningless phrases of a football player on autopilot during an interview. No, Menotti's Huracán were a gluttonous bunch that enjoyed the better things in life, such as football. Menotti's team shocked Argentine football in 1973 with skill, elegant passing, and foresight, going against the prevalent 'anti-futbol' philosophy.

"Right-wing football wants us to feel that life is a fight," Menotti said, referring to the sport as a struggle and a sacrifice. It necessitates making compromises. We need to toughen up and win by whatever means necessary."

Menotti's football was a wet dream for Louis van Gaal, a seductive and enthralling combination of theory and talent. His most famous phrase, dubbed the "Descartes of football," is that a "team above all is a concept." Menotti gained a devoted and loving following known as the Menottistas, thanks to his attitude of contemplation.

Menotti saw football as a means of realizing one's aspirations. To Menotti, a footballer was in a privileged position. He not only had the power to entertain and enchant millions of onlookers with the simple swiveling of his boots, but he also had the ability to discern moods and dreams. Argentina's supporters fantasized about greatness, and the players shared their interpretations of that fantasy.

Menotti took on the task of rebuilding a crestfallen South American behemoth that had been pushed away in 1974 with that unbending attitude. Menotti was more concerned with executing a revolution in Argentine football than with winning – though he did care about that. He wanted for his players to enjoy football as a spectator sport. And with that, they were on their way to find the turnaround.

"I believe that a team is first and foremost a concept, and that an idea is followed by a commitment, and that a commitment is followed by the firm beliefs that a coach must instill in his players in order to defend that idea. So, my worry is that we coaches don't claim the right to remove the celebration from the spectacle in favor of a philosophical interpretation that can't be maintained, which is to avoid taking risks. And there are hazards in football because the only way to avoid incurring chances in any game is to not participate." Menotti, César Luis

Menotti's offensive approach was shown in a straightforward 4-3-3 formation. Mario Kempes, Leopoldo Luque, and Oscar Ortiz were among Argentina's many direct, hard-running forwards. Menotti's Argentina were a thrilling creation, because to the midfield skill of Ossie Ardiles and the blistering speed of René Houseman. Menotti's message was to just play excellent football, not to win the game.

They undoubtedly achieved their goal during the 1978 World Cup. They didn't compete in the event since they didn't have a 17-year-old emerging star.

Diego Maradona was the player in question. Menotti was under great pressure to put the youngster in his team after being dubbed Argentina's future superstar. Menotti had given Maradona his full international debut, but he believed his team was complete. As a result, he passed on Maradona, but it didn't matter in the end.

Argentina then went on to win the 1978 World Cup with a bang. They won their first group stage before facing a tough struggle in the second, which included a match against their longtime rivals Brazil. Menotti's side needed a victory over Peru after a 2-0 triumph over Poland and a drab 0-0 draw with


. Not only that, but they had to win by a four-goal margin.

That World Cup happened to be held against the background of Argentina's right-wing military dictatorship, commanded by Jorge Videla. Peru allegedly threw the match to allow its hosts to advance to the final.

Videla is accused of making a deal with the Peruvian dictatorship to move 13 Peruvian individuals to Argentina as part of the Condor Plan, which was aimed to suppress political dissidents. Videla allegedly agreed to accept the captives on the condition that Peru concede the match.

Whether or not it is true, Argentina triumphed 6-0, putting them in a position to face Holland in the final. Argentina's World Cup victory has always been seen with suspicion as a result of that 'arrangement,' but not due to Menotti's fault.

The evidence against Argentina is ambiguous, as Jonathan Wilson points out, and watching the match was like "seeing a team with nothing to play for steadily being overpowered by extremely determined opponents in a fierce environment."

Menotti might be blamed for instilling a competitive spirit among his team. Despite having no involvement in the Netherlands team bus taking the'scenic' route to the Monumental prior of the final, he purposefully delayed his teammates' arrival on the field.

Menotti had urged that his team play with the same style and aggressive determination that they had shown throughout the campaign, regardless of the Dutch mood. Argentina won as a result of this.

After a 1-1 draw after 90 minutes, Kempes and Daniel Bertoni both scored in extra time to give Menotti's team the win. Indeed, the win will always be closely tied to the military junta's alleged operations, but Menotti's achievement should be seen as a manifestation of Argentina's national team's stylistic heritage.

Menotti's school of football philosophy was centered on reintroducing pleasure to Argentine football, which he achieved. He was focused on instilling a sense of flair and swagger in a squad that had been badly failing before to his arrival, and he succeeded. Indeed, his football took away the bitter taste in Argentinians' mouths by providing the polar opposite of the anti-futbol style of life.

To speak about Menotti is to talk about what happened after him, of course. He left a glistening legacy when he departed the Albiceleste position in 1982, but it was not one that was preserved.

Carlos Bilardo, who had been moulded by Osvaldo Zubelda's lectures at Estudiantes, was selected as the anti-Menotti in 1983. From then, Bilardo aided in the creation of the ultimate Argentine football narrative: Menottism and Bilardisme.

Unlike the Menottistas, who would do whatever to make football appear nice while doing so, the Bilardo argument was to do whatever it took to win.

That was all there was to it. Zubelda's effect was undeniable, and it aided Bilardo in boldly changing the Argentine mindset to "football is winning and nothing else." Menotti could nearly be heard coughing in contempt through his cigarette smoke as Bilardo seized over.

Of course, Bilardo's pragmatism became linked with Maradona's inexorable ascent, as he led Argentina to their second World Cup victory in 1986.

In fact, in today's game, both men's impact can still be easily seen.

Diego Simeone

, the La Liga-winning manager of

Atlético Madrid

, was a direct pupil of Bilardo, under whom he played.

Simeone has left an illustrious legacy at Atleti, but it is not one that Menotti will be celebrating anytime soon. His side isn't really appealing. They are, in some ways, Vicente Calderón's street-fighting ruffians, very much in the Bilardo mold.

During his successful four-year stay with Chile, Jorge Sampaoli came to embody many of Menotti's goals and values. At the previous two World Cups, La Roja have garnered a lot of praise for embracing the spectacle-driven side of football, using an unpredictable attacking shape that blends parts of Marcelo Bielsa and Menotti.

Menotti's career may not have been as trophy-laden as others of his countrymen's, but his career represents the style of football over the decades. Fluid ball movement and quick passing were the cornerstones of his managing career. The key was to pass. Menotti used to remind his players that a goal was just another pass into the net, and that it was a formula that included highs and lows.

In the same way that Arrigo Sacchi's fame and significance loom above the depth of his trophy cabinet. Both of these individuals have had a significant impact on the contemporary game, and it says a lot that their thoughts are often heard while they are not working.

Later in his career, Menotti rose to prominence as an Argentine television analyst and commentator, putting his extensive knowledge of the game to good use and delivering insightful commentary on the national team's present status.

Yes, after the 1978 World Cup victory, Menotti's career did not provide him with an uninterrupted stream of achievements, but that was never his drive. His goal was to give Argentina a new lease of life.

They had been stifled by the anti-ftbol that had preceded his rule, as he viewed it, and he intended to correct that. Menotti managed to amuse while still delivering the holy grail of football with his incredible motivating skills and unwavering dedication to sport as both rhythmical and gorgeous.

We call it 'the beautiful game,' and a Menotti figure should always have a place in it. There is a free-flowing idealist for every hard-nosed pragmatic who dares to imagine a manner of playing without scrutinizing every blade of grass on the surface.

Yes, due to the universal smoking prohibition, a manager would not be permitted to have a cigarette protruding from every orifice, and a heavy gold chain would not be in line with contemporary trend, but let it be known that football needs characters like César Luis Menotti. In the game, there is always opportunity for new ideas.

Some quick facts about Cesar Luis Menotti:

Menotti's first championship as a manager came with Huracán in the 1973 Torneo Metropolitano, with a team that contained noteworthy players like Carlos Babington, Miguel Brindisi, Roque Avallay, and René Houseman. That team was extensively recognized by the media for their playing style, and it was regarded as one of the finest Argentine teams of all time.

Huracán played 32 games, winning 19 and losing five. The team scored 62 goals while receiving 30 assists. In October 1974, Menotti was named head coach of Argentina's national team.

Menotti coached Argentina to their first FIFA World Cup victory in 1978, when they defeated the Netherlands in the final.

An important

fact about Luis Menotti

is that he guided Argentina's U20 national team to victory in the World Youth Championship in Japan in 1979, with Diego Maradona serving as the squad's key player.

Argentina was eliminated in the first round of the 1982 World Cup by Belgium. Fillol, Olguin, Galván, Passarella, Tarantini; Ardiles, Gallego, Maradona; Bertoni, Daz, and Kempes were the starting lineup. Argentina then overcame Hungary and El Salvador before losing both of their matches against Italy and Brazil in Group 3 of the second round.

Menotti became Barcelona's head coach in 1983, and before departing in 1984, he helped the club win the Copa del Rey, the 1983 Copa de la Liga, and the 1983 Supercopa de Espana. Guadalajara offered him a formal offer to become their academy director on February 3, 2017. Menotti was appointed director of the Argentina National Teams in January 2019.

A notable fact about Luis Menotti is that he had a rebellious streak and maintained a cold demeanor throughout his career. He had long hair, was dressed casually, and would make allusions to cultural figures in his chats, ranging from writer Ernesto Sabato to singer Joan Manuel Serrat. He had strong political opinions, creating a left-wing socialist image while holding a prominent position under the right-wing military government.

Menotti famously said, "There are two types of football: right-wing and left-wing. Right-wing football aspires to portray life as a struggle. It necessitates making compromises. We must become steel and win by all means necessary... those in authority demand that the players comply and function. That's how retards, useful fools who go along with the system, are created.”

Cesar Luis Menotti social media


Cesar Luis Menotti social media

, it should be mentioned that he has an Instagram page (


) with more than 27k followers. In the page we can see various pictures of him with the fans and his family.

He also has a Twitter account (


) with 14.2k followers. He often posts new stuff on his Twitter page.

Cesar Luis Menotti body measurements

Speaking about

Cesar Luis Menotti body measurements

, it should be mentioned that the former coach is 193 cm and 84 kg.

Cesar Luis Menotti net worth and salary

Cesar Luis Menotti's net worth

is estimated to be about $5 million by 2021. His football career, first as a player and subsequently as a manager, was a major source of revenue for him.

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