Former Liverpool player Steven Gerrard began his managerial career with Scottish Premiership club Rangers in 2018. Prior to Gerrard’s appointment, his only previous managerial experience was with the Liverpool Youth Under 18’s team. He is one of the good examples of successful inexperienced football managers.
When Gerrard took the helm of Rangers, the team began to improve dramatically, culminating in the 2020-2021 season, when Rangers remained unbeaten all season and won their first Scottish Premiership title in a decade. Gerrard was recently fired after serving as manager of Premier League club Aston Villa.
The former Spanish international, best known for his long tenure at FC Barcelona, first became coach of the FC Barcelona B reserve team in 2007, which was his only experience when he took the helm of the FC Barcelona first team in 2008, topping the list of successful inexperienced soccer managers.
In his first year at Barcelona, he led the team to win the Triple, which includes La Liga, Copa Del Rey, and the Champions League. After four successful years at Barcelona, he moved to FC Bayern Munich, which he led to victory in the Bundesliga in his three seasons. Since 2016, he has successfully led Manchester City to four league titles, the FA Cup, and their first Champions League final (although they have yet to win it). He is known as one of the greatest managers of all time.
Zidane, a French footballer known for his career with Juventus, Real Madrid, and the French national team, began his coaching career at Real Madrid as an assistant and then coached the reserve team of Los Blancos. After that, he became one of the most successful inexperienced managers in soccer.
Zidane became Real Madrid’s first-team coach in January 2016 after then-manager Rafael Benitez was fired. Within months, Zidane led the team to the Champions League final, where they won 5-3 on penalties against local rivals Atletico Madrid.
Roberto Di Matteo
Di Matteo, who became a Chelsea legend during his career, began his coaching career in 2008 with the Milton Keynes Dons. In his first season, he led the team to third place in League One, only missing out on promotion in the semifinals of the playoffs.
Di Matteo stayed with MK Dons for just one season before moving to West Bromwich Albion. In his first season, the club finished second in the Championship, just behind Newcastle United, and secured automatic promotion to the Premier League.
But that wasn’t the end of the story, as he became interim manager of Chelsea FC in March 2012. By May, he had Chelsea winning both the Champions League and the FA Cup. He is clearly one of the most successful inexperienced soccer managers.
Frank de Boer
De Boer is best known for his long career at Ajax, five years at Barcelona and many caps with the Dutch national team. His career as a manager began as the coach of Ajax’s youth team, after which he was an assistant coach for the Dutch national team for a short time.
After his time in the Netherlands, he was appointed coach of Ajax’s first team in 2010 and is considered one of the most successful inexperienced coaches in soccer. De Boer helped Ajax win the Eredivisie title in the 2010-11 season. In 2014, De Boer won the Eredivisie title with Ajax for the fourth time in a row, becoming the first coach in the history of the Dutch league to do so.