So it’s official. At the end of the season, Marco Rose will leave Borussia Monchengladbach behind and become manager of Borussia Dortmund.
Rose has made quite the splash since arriving in Germany from Austria, taking Gladbach to the next level by qualifying for the Champions League. He will join Dortmund just two years after taking charge of his first Bundesliga match, signalling how quickly he has been able to climb the ladder.
The deal was announced as expected on Monday, and for anyone still unfamiliar with one of the most handsome men in football, 90min have everything you need to know.
Obviously, you don’t just land the Gladbach job for nothing. Even before arriving in Germany in the summer of 2019, Rose was already a very highly-rated coach, thanks to a successful two-year stint with Red Bull Salzburg.
Rose’s Salzburg captured the attentions with their Europa League antics – they famously eliminated Borussia Dortmund on their way to the semi-finals of the 2017/18 competition.
He took charge of Salzburg for 114 matches, and didn’t lose once at home. He left with an average of 2.34 points per game – the best any manager has attained in the Austrian Bundesliga’s 131-year history.
OK, ‘legendary’ status may depend on how this season plays out, but in his short time with Gladbach, Rose has more than made his mark.
In his debut season, Die Fohlen qualified for the Champions League for only the third time in their history.
They were already on an upward curve before Rose’s arrival, but he galvanized them and turned them into a serious force. He even had them in title contention before Bayern went all OP and bulldozed everyone in their path in the second half of the campaign.
Earning further recognition for his distinct tactical style (we’ll get to that), he has them in the last 16 of this year’s Champions League, where they will face Manchester City this week.
That’s how Rose describes his tactics.
As quoted in an excellent Holding Midfield piece analysing his system, Rose is quoted as saying: “We want to be very active against the ball, sprint a lot. We want to win high balls and have short ways to the goal. We don’t want to play high and wide, but fast, dynamic and actively forward.”
We’ve seen that aggressive style come to pass with Gladbach, who take no prisoners in their rapid counter-attacks, but also defend with a distinct shape that makes them difficult to break down.
Sounds like Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool, doesn’t it? Wonder why that is…
Klopp and Rose were initially team-mates at Mainz back in 2000, but Klopp soon retired to take the reins of the Bundesliga 2 side, who he would lead to promotion to the top flight.
The two didn’t get on initially: Klopp’s reluctance to play Rose from the start allegedly led to training ground ‘shouting matches’ but Rose, a hard-working left-back, persevered to win his trust. He went on to make 156 appearances under the man he would come to idolise.
Various outlets cite Klopp as the first person to predict Rose would go on to become a coach, and he told German TV shortly before he left Salzburg: “I trust Marco in everything. Marco can have any job and could do any job too, he is really the most hyped [coach] of all at the moment, everyone is asking about you.”
Ooooh, Mainz friends.
Rose is described as one of the most personable and charismatic coaches in the game, and he has had to use all the attributes available to him to get to where he is now.
Where others, such as Klopp, fell into managerial positions straight off the back of their playing careers, Rose had to grind. He was introduced to coaching with the Mainz reserve side when he was still playing, and went on to manage Lokomotive Leipzig in the fourth tier.
A season there preceded a move to Austria, where he initially took charge of the under-16 team for the 2013-14 season. Four years of steady climbing later, he was in charge of the first-team.
Three years later still, he’s set to take the reins at Borussia Dortmund.
While Rose’s long-term future lies in Dortmund, that’s not where his focus will be for the time being – far from it.
Gladbach are looking to play their way back into this season’s top four, having slipped to seventh place after a recent dip in form. They’re directly competing with Dortmund to that end and have a six-point gap to make up on Wolfsburg.
There is also the small matter of a Champions League last 16 tie with Manchester City waiting on the horizon. You know Rose would love to take another scalp or two before he signs off for good.