Red Bull Salzburg manager Jesse Marsch has been awarded Coach of the Year for the 2019-20 season. The first-year European coach was beyond impressive, taking the team to the double by winning the Austrian Cup and the Austrian Bundesliga. All of this despite the team being stripped of top talent midway through the campaign.
"Winning Coach of the Year for me is a reward for the entire team," said Marsch. "The trophy is for the whole coaching staff, as we have worked so well together. Losing players in winter brought us closer together."
Salzburg began the year with one of the most dynamic strikers in recent years, Erling Haaland. The youngster burst onto the international scene with a gluttony of goals in the league as well as UEFA Champions League. The difficulties came in January when Haaland departed the team for Borussia Dortmund. Right behind him was the transfer of Takumi Minamino to Liverpool FC, leaving Marsch without his two most prolific players.
The team sank in the table and looked to be losing their hold on a seventh consecutive championship. Marsch and his staff reorganized the team and relied on youngsters like Patson Daka, Noah Okafor and Dominik Szoboszlai. Salzburg rebounded when the league resumed following the COVID-19 pandemic stoppage and dominated in order to retain their championship.
Marsch isn't done yet. He is looking forward to taking the team into next season with thoughts of being effective in Europe. Winning the league has given Salzburg a spot in the group stage of the next UEFA Champions League and he is looking forward to another crack at the competition.