Sampaoli as manager of Chile in September 2013
|Full name||Jorge Sampaoli|
|Date of birth||13 March 1960|
|Place of birth||Santa Fe, Argentina|
|Height||1.72 m (5 ft 7 1⁄2 in)|
|Playing position||Defensive midfielder|
|1977–1979||Newell's Old Boys|
|2011–2012||Universidad de Chile|
Jorge Sampaoli (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈxorxe sampaˈoli]; born 13 March 1960) is an Argentine football manager, currently coaching the Chile national football team. Sampaoli started out as a youth player and eventually switched to management due to a severe injury. Sampaoli started with an impressive managerial period at Coronel Bolognesi in 2006, and then again with a brief but successful period at O'Higgins and Emelec.
Sampaoli definitively consecrated as a head coach in 2011-2012 with Universidad de Chile, winning three league titles and the Copa Sudamericana championship. This success led him to coach the Chilean men's national team in 2013, replacing the previous coach. He is well known for his attack tactics, similar to those of Marcelo Bielsa according to the press and fans alike.
He was born in Casilda, a small town located in Caseros Department of Santa Fe Province. In his youth, Sampaoli was very passionate about football, playing for amateur sides in his hometown league, and then joining the Newell's Old Boys youth ranks, where he suffered a tibia and fibula injury in 1979, forcing his retirement at the age of 19.
After his injury, Sampaoli decided to start his managerial career at amateur side Aprendices Casildenses in 1992. Four seasons later, he led Belgrano de Arequito to the championship. During the same season, the authorities forbade him access to the stadium. A photo of the scene appeared in the Rosario newspaper La Capital, drawing attention of his former club (Newell's) president Eduardo José López, who offered him the chance to coach their reserve club Argentino de Rosario.
First hit at Peru
In January 2002, Sampaoli was contacted by the Peruvian club Juan Aurich, after four seasons at Primera B Metropolitana with Argentino. He finally signed up with the club of Chiclayo in Primera División, being that the first professional club in his career. On February 24, he directed his first professional game against Universitario (country's powerhouse club), where he lost 2–1 after being winning the whole game due to a Penalty kick well scored by Carlos Flores (66th' minute), when the striker and his compatriot Martín Vilallonga due to another penalty tied the game (88th' minute). Finally, the mythical and experienced midfielder José del Solar set up his side at 92nd' minute. However, Sampaoli had a poor spell in Juan Aurich, directing only eight games, where five were lost and two were tied with Coopsol Trujillo and Alianza Lima, only winning against Cienciano 2–0 with goals of César Sánchez and Carlos Flores. Sampaoli left the club in May, when Aurich was sitting at the bottom of the table. Months later, in June, he was hired by Sport Boys to direct the team in the Torneo Descentralizado, debuting with a 2–0 victory over Coronel Bolognesi, finishing sixth in the tournament, with important triumphs over Alianza (1–0 with a goal of Alfredo Carmona) and Universitario (2–0 with scores of Paolo de la Haza and Carmona again at Estadio Monumental). Then, in 2004, he was hired by Tacna side Coronel Bolognesi. There, he had an irregular start, but soon managed to settle as a strong team in the Peruvian 2005's Descentralizado, finishing 5th in the Apertura, and then managed to finish 3rd in that same year's Clausura, taking the club to their first international competition when Bolo qualified to a preliminar stage of the 2006's Copa Sudamericana, being eliminated by Chilean side and eventual finalists Colo-Colo. He then returned to the Peruvian side to compete in the 2006's Clausura as well as in the Sudamericana, finishing 3rd in the national league. In 2007 he was hired as the head coach of Sporting Cristal. However, it turned out to be a disappointing year after 17 matches and only 4 wins. At the end of the year Sampaoli got dismissed from the "Celestes", thus ending his Peruvian journey.
Spells in Chile and Ecuador
Towards the end of 2007 Sampaoli arrived to Chile to take charge of O'Higgins. In 2008, the team proved to be a tough nut to crack for bigger Chilean teams, finishing 3rd in that year's Apertura. They were eliminated by powerhouse Universidad de Chile in the playoff quarterfinals. The next year turned out to be a tough year for Sampaoli, as "La Celeste" had an irregular campaign, where they finished in 8th place, and, despite qualifying to the 2009's Apertura Playoffs, ended up being thrashed 6-1 in the second leg of the quarterfinals by Santiago side Unión Española. Sampaoli was fired in August 2009.
In 2010, Emelec got in contact with Sampaoli and asked him for his managerial duties, thus competing in the 2010 Copa Libertadores, being eliminated in the group stage, but had an impressive run in the local competition, finishing 1st in the 2010's tournament first stage, which earned them a spot in the next 2010 Copa Sudamericana and 2011 Copa Libertadores preliminary stage. That year, Emelec faced Liga de Quito, who had reached 1st place in that year's second half, but ended up losing it.
On 3 December 2012 Chile’s National Association of Professional Football announced that Sampaoli will take over as manager of the national team after a successful run with Universidad de Chile where he helped the club capture three league titles and the Copa Sudamericana.
Sampaoli's arrival has brought about a turnaround in performances and results, with Chile having won three of their four World Cup qualifiers since his appointment. Under Sampaoli, Chile have returned to the energetic, high-pressing game of Marcelo Bielsa, the Argentinian coach upon whose philosophy Sampaoli's is predicated.
- Universidad de Chile
- "Fichajes 2002". Peru.com. Retrieved 24 December 2012.
- "El Ciclón de Sampaoli". De Chalaca. Retrieved 24 December 2012.
- "Jorge Sampaoli confirmed as manager of Chile’s national team". Santiago Times. 3 December 2012. Retrieved 4 December 2012.
- "Sampaoli appointed Chile coach". FIFA. 3 December 2012. Retrieved 4 December 2012.
- "Jorge Sampaoli, 3-4-3 and the Transformation of Chile".