A significant change at the top of the Inter Milan managerial hierarchy took place this week, as Dutch manager Frank de Boer took over the reins of Nerazzurri heading into the 2016-17 campaign.
The appointment occurred following the departure of Roberto Mancini, who seemed to have great difficulty in satisfying both the owners and fans alike. Transfer moves appeared to have become cursed and the quality of football on display in pre-season friendlies was even worse.
Frank De Boer, one of the most-capped players in the history of the Dutch national team who also played alongside Dennis Bergkamp brings with him a wealth of knowledge and experience from his travels as a skilled defender, a veteran of World Cups and a successful manager over the past few seasons in the Eredivisie.
Following a fourth-place finish in Serie A last season, Mancini’s future had been the subject of speculation throughout the summer, but a poor run of heavy defeats in pre-season friendlies including Tottenham (6-1) and Bayern Munich (4-1) appears to have been the final nail in his Inter coffin.
As a new era is about to begin at Inter Milan, we take a look at what de Boer will bring to the San Siro in 2016-17.
Legendary Playing Career
Frank de Boer enjoyed a tremendous playing career, representing two of the world’s most prestigious football clubs, Ajax and Barcelona. The two teams have shared many of the game’s great players, managers and philosophies for decades.
Thanks to Johan Cruyff and what he brought to both Amsterdam and Catalonia, the way was paved for many great individuals to work with both clubs during their careers.
As a centre-back, De Boer was part of a successful Ajax team that won five Eredivisie titles, two KNVB cups, and two UEFA Champions Leagues between 1988 and 1999.
His experience in playing at the top level of European football will go a long way in leading Inter Milan back to the pinnacle of the Italian top flight and his experience as a defender will certainly help Inter to set-up a more stringent defensive structure which will be hard to penetrate for even the most potent of forwards.
A Successful Manager
Frank has been one of the most effective managers in Europe over the past few years, as Ajax saw almost nothing but league titles during his stay.
Taking over the position in December of 2010, de Boer led the team he spent the majority of his playing career with to an incredible four consecutive Eredivisie titles at a time when they were nowhere to be found on the European scene.
Both de Boer and Inter Milan will be hoping for a similar reaction to his appointment now, as his ability to motivate and guide players can show immediate positive results.
The Oranje are well known for their Rembrandt-like creativity as they possess an incredible knack for thinking outside the box even in pressured situations.
From the phenomenon of ‘Total Football’ to the Cruyff Turn to Dennis Bergkamp’s magic on the ball (not to mention his legendary goal against Argentina in the 1998 WC Quarter Finals against Argentina), the Dutch have forever been able to make an impact on the minds and hearts of football fans around the globe.
Frank de Boer will not be afraid to try something new and different, and Inter supporters will be happy to see that. Should things go to plan, he could even lead Inter back to the top of the Italian game, though this is a project that could take several seasons.