The role of a football manager has evolved significantly over the years. Back then, a manager's primary responsibility was to organize the team, make tactical decisions on match days, sign players, coach them, and juggle the media. They'd row with chairpersons and drive the length of the country scouting players. The manager of old was often spotted in an oversized coat on the sidelines, sometimes smoking a cigar or cigarette, which fell in line with the culture of the seventies and eighties. Off the field, there were stories of managers having whiskey bottles in their desks before, during, and after the game. They were hard-faced, hard-living, and often hard to emulate.

Today, the role of a manager is far more focused. Often, a director of football handles player transfers, and the manager is now left to negotiate contracts and the like. Instead, there's a much bigger focus on man-management and player psychology. In the past, managers were often seen as authoritarian figures who relied on discipline and fear to motivate their players. However, today's managers understand the importance of building solid relationships with their players, earning their trust, and creating a positive and supportive environment. This shift towards a more player-centered approach has led to improved team dynamics, enhanced player performance, and increased loyalty from the squad.

It has also led to a 'do as I do' approach, meaning cigarettes and hard drinking have been eradicated from the game. There are still managers, and even players, who enjoy a cigarette, but they're rarely pictured smoking, and it's never seen at the pitch side during a game. Instead, they rely on products such as SNUS or other nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), which means they can still get their kick, but not influence their players. Discreet products similar to SNUS, namely nicotine pouches like the ones found on Prilla from all the leading pouch brands, sit under the top lip and deliver a hit of nicotine in a range of flavors unseen by anyone observing. They also vary in strength, so managers who might otherwise chain smoke in the dugout can go in hard with a high level of nicotine to satisfy their cravings during the match.

The same goes for drinking. It's rare to see a modern football manager having a drink, and the general drinking culture of the seventies has all but waned. Indeed, that has also been reflected in the players of the modern era, with many top football players becoming teetotal. That's undoubtedly partly down to the current football coach living how he (or she) expects their players to live. Nowadays, it's more common to see managers sipping from a water bottle than a whiskey glass, that's for sure. You do still see some managers promoting drinking but rarely indulging.

It isn't just the habits of managers that have changed – their roles and approaches have also altered. There is an increased importance of data and analytics in modern football coaching. In the past, managers relied on their intuition and experience to make tactical decisions. Today, however, they have access to vast data and sophisticated analytical tools that provide valuable insights into various aspects of the game. From player performance metrics to opponent analysis, managers can make informed decisions based on evidence and statistical analysis.

Furthermore, the modern football manager must be adept at handling the media and public relations. In today's digital age, the media scrutiny of managers and players has intensified significantly. Managers are expected to navigate press conferences, interviews, and social media with finesse, as their words and actions can have far-reaching consequences – indeed, if they turned up with a whiskey in one hand and a cigar in the other, all hell would break loose! Instead, they must be skilled in managing public perception, dealing with criticism, and maintaining a positive image for the team and themselves. Effective communication and media management skills have become essential tools for modern football managers, allowing them to build strong relationships with the press and control the narrative surrounding their teams.

Lastly, modern football managers must be adaptable and open to innovation. The sport constantly evolves, with new tactics, technologies, and trends emerging regularly. Successful managers can embrace change, think creatively, and stay ahead of the competition. They must be willing to experiment with new formations, training methods, and strategies to keep their team competitive. This requires a continuous learning mindset, staying updated on the latest sports developments, and being open to adopting new ideas and approaches.

The general culture of specific eras, such as the seventies, or entire countries, such as Italy, often created managers who liked a smoke and a drink, ruled with a rod of iron and took responsibility for everything at their club. Today's manager is far more focused on themselves and their well-being. They're data-driven, technologically advanced, and treat the beautiful game as an exact science.