Esquire’s 2022 World Cup Bracket: Our Picks for the 8 Most Stylish Managers – Esquire
This World Cup has defied all expectations. First there was Saudi Arabia’s defeat of the favored Argentines, then Morocco’s sweeping of their group (and rise to the Semis), and finally, Brazil’s solemn loss in penalties. Safe to say that it has been full of surprises. But one of the biggest surprises, and perhaps the most underrated one, is that the players aren’t the only ones with big fits. This time around, it’s the managers at the forefront of soccer style.
While there’s no dress code, there are typically two types of football managers: the suits and the tracksuits. In the mid-1800s, at the inception of modern soccer, the game was a formal event and suits were the coaching custom. As the game evolved over centuries, the fashion formalities took a step back. Tracksuits became a popular uniform for managers, an accepted comfort. Today, some managers choose to stick with the suits, some opt for the tracksuit; it all comes down to personal preference. We are seeing both in this World Cup, and everything in between.
From sharp and stately three-piece suits to full fledged Puma groutfits, the managers are putting their own spin on sideline style. There’s collared shirts and Sambas, baseball caps and polished dress shoes—the turf is Qatar Fashion Week and the sidelines are the runway.
If you’ve been watching the World Cup, you might have already noticed this uptick in sideline style. Maybe you tried to cop Gregg Berhalter’s Air Jordans. Maybe you couldn’t help but stare at Hervé Renard and wonder who you should have bribed in a past life to get genes like his. Or maybe you haven’t been paying attention to any of this at all and are simply here for the soccer. Regardless, something I bet you didn’t notice is that often the managers’ personal style is reflective of their coaching style. We see it in Hajime Moriyasu—smart suit, play smart. Hansi Flick blends into the background with his monochrome outfit, composed like his German team. There’s a deeper analysis on this that I go into, so I’ll spare you my monologue. For now.
Yes, I know the quarterfinals are over. But it really wouldn’t be a proper sports tournament without an Esquire edition. I may have lost in my family’s World Cup bracket, but this is one I’m pretty confident in. Out of all 32 managers, these are the 8 managers with hands down the best 2022 World Cup style, so choose who you think is advancing to the Semis in this bracket. Go ahead, take a shot. Let’s have it.
Hansi Flick, Germany
Flick’s style is the embodiment of calm, cool, and collected. He rocks the monochrome fit in a sea of blues, with a pair of white sneakers to contrast, keeping professionalism alive up top, with comfort on the bottom. As I said before, his style translates to his coaching. Flick lets his players shine, blending into the background and giving freedom to his team. The sneakers are a bit off kilter from the rest of the outfit, akin to his asymmetrical attacking shape.
Hajime Moriyasu, Japan
Moriyasu is the definition of smart. From his polished dress shoes to his French cuffs to his three-piece suit, he is undoubtedly one of the sharpest managers out there. It’s no surprise that his coaching style is equally astute, as he wisely leads through learning from others.
Gregg Berhalter, USA
What would you expect from the American coach other than a street style sideline display. I’m not complaining though; this graphic Nike T-shirt and khaki ensemble is paired with Air Jordans. In fact, he donned a different pair of sneakers in each of the U.S. team’s matches, and I’m pretty confident had they continued on, there would not have been any rewearing. It’s similar to his coaching—he wanted the world to see the U.S. as a cutting-edge team, and this shows in his innovative fashion.
Gareth Southgate, England
Ah yes, Sir Southgate, whose style has actually seen its own revolution this year. His iconic three-piece suit and notorious waistcoat have been traded in for a knitted front-zip cream sweater, a tailored navy blazer, and burgundy socks to complete the full flag of colors. He has ditched his tie and done away with the suit in favor of a more informal approach, much like that of his coaching.
Luis Enrique, Spain
Enrique is known for having a frame that flatters anything. He doesn’t care what people think of what he wears (or how he coaches), and he pretty much gets away with wearing anything. Forgoing the suit and the tracksuit boxes, Enrique is a bit of an outlier, occasionally even sporting cargo pants with a tucked-in polo. His World Cup chino and Sambas fit is exactly what men are strutting about the West Village in, and we can’t help but condone this look.
Rigobert Song, Cameroon
This man gives us straight-up rockstar vibes. His coaching style is as entertaining as his clothes; there is a sense of performance about both. A baseball cap and beaded bracelets add his own flair to the fit, and the dress shoes are a clean choice. Qatar Fashion Week’s leading male model right here.
Didier Deschamps, France
Deschamps doesn’t really have to do much, but it doesn’t matter. With a blue oxford under a blue suit jacket, he stays loyal to his team. The defending World Cup champion doesn’t feel the need to be flashy, on or off the field. I’m not speaking for Mbappe and the rest of the French, though.
Aliou Cisse, Senegal
A man that sticks to his principles. Comfort first, there’s still something classy about this groutfit that Cisse pulls out. Maybe it’s the confidence that he wears it with, or the distinguished white Nikes. Whatever it is, he is smashing it. Also, I need this Puma x Senegal National Team collab now.
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