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The International Federation of Football History & Statistics calculated the top 15 by adding up every 'Coach of the Year' vote for the last 20 years and one man emerged victorious: Jose Mourinho.
Whatever his struggles at Tottenham, Mourinho is clearly one of the great modern coaches having won league titles in Portugal, England, Italy and Spain, plus the Champions League twice (with Porto then Inter Milan) among a host of other club trophies.
Joint third on the list are Sir Alex Ferguson and Pep Guardiola - and nobody can deny that the Manchester United legend or current Manchester City coach are among the best ever.
However second on the list is, controversially, Joaquim Low. Perhaps the Germany boss is being rewarded for his longevity - and for the small matter of winning a World Cup - but second spot does seem a bit, well, high for Low.
Arsene Wenger completes the top five. And the ex-Arsenal boss also does well to finish above sixth-place Carlo Ancelotti (winner of three Champions Leagues) or seventh-place Vicente del Bosque (who won silverware at Real Madrid and then with Spain).
However the IFFHS list clearly values longevity and only takes into account trophies won since 2001. So Fergie's incredible Man United trophy haul from the 1990s doesn't come into play.
The full IFFHS world's best coach of the 21st century list is below.
15. Marcelo Lippi
14. Rafael Benitez
13. Luiz Felipe Scolari
12. Gus Hiddink
11. Fabio Capello
10. Marcelo Bielsa
9. Didier Deschamps
8. Diego Simeone
7. Vicente del Bosque
6. Carlo Ancelotti
5. Arsene Wenger
3= Pep Guardiola
3= Sir Alex Ferguson
2. Joaquim Low
1. Jose Mourinho
Jurgen Klopp - widely regarded as one of the world's elite managers after his triumphs at Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool - is the most notable absence. Perhaps Klopp is just paying the price for his success only beginning about halfway through the 20-year timespan (Zinedine Zidane is also absent).
Leeds United fans will be delighted to see Marcelo Bielsa - often touted as a visionary coach, albeit without an impressive trophy haul - crack the top 10.
But it's surprising to see Rafael Benitez, winner of a Champions League and two La Liga titles this century, only 14th.
Luiz Felipe Scolari and Marcelo Lippi also sit just outside the top 10, despite winning World Cups with Brazil and Italy respectively since the year 2000.
Does the IFFHS best coach of this century list match your view? Or are there some seriously questionable placings?
Let us know in the comments.
All imagery: PA Images
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