Will Brazilian Coach Ricardo Ferretti Bring Discipline to El Tri?

Sixty-one-year-old Rio de Janeiro native Ricardo “El Tuca” Ferretti seems to have just the right amount of nuttiness and Mexican-fútbol savvy to follow in El Piojo Herrera’s footsteps. Don’t forget that Herrera’s tenure started with an interim gig, and like we reported yesterday, El Tuca will join El Tri as interim head coach for at least the next two months. A quick peek at his fake Twitter will undoubtedly lead you to a similar conclusion.

Ferretti started his coaching career with Pumas UNAM in 1991. Before making the switch to the manager’s chair, he was a long-time player for the Ciudad Universitaria side, blasting shots from the center of the midfield like this one.

He also spent time competing with Botafogo, Vasco da Gama, and Bonsucesso in Brazil, and Atlas, Coyotes Neza, Monterrey, and Toluca in Mexico.

Ferretti has led six top-flight sides in Liga MX action over 24 consecutive seasons.

Since 1991, Ferretti has led six top-flight sides in Liga MX action over 24 consecutive seasons. He’s quite simply never looked back. So I think it’s safe to say that if there’s anyone who knows a thing or two about Mexican fútbol, it’s him.

Ferretti is currently four years into his third stint with Tigres UANL. He coached his squad to its first title in 29 years with an Apertura win over Santos Laguna in 2011, and added a Copa championship to his resume with a 3-0 win over Alebrijes de Oaxaca in 2014, making him the first coach in Mexico to win league and cup titles with the same team. Damn. As if this wasn’t enough, last month Tigres became the third Mexican team to ever play in the Copa Libertadores finals (falling 3-0 on aggregate to River Plate).

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You’re probably asking yourself, “How does he do it?!” How does this man, who is known for his mood swings in pressers (funny to angry), outbursts on the training pitch (like this must-see preseason gem from last June), and crazy antics (remember that time he hid behind the bench to watch the end of the match after being sent off this past March?) do it?!

His childhood dream was joining the Brazilian army.

Well, he does it based on an ordered, no-nonsense, possession-oriented style of play. Ferretti’s teams are disciplined, well-oiled machines that ooze cohesion, a result of his strict, direct, and aggressive manner of being and coaching. He might sound a bit crazy, but this all makes sense when placed in the context of his childhood dream: joining the Brazilian army.

El Tri under Ferretti will not be El Tri under Herrera. A more defensive approach will most likely mean that Mexico will have to dig out a couple of gritty wins, but this shouldn’t be a problem given the attacking prowess that the squad boasts. Only time will tell. The playoff against the U.S. to decide the CONCACAF spot for the 2017 Confederations Cup is fast approaching.