Cozzi's Classics: The Managers Part 2
Alan Cozzi has been Watford FC's full-time photographer since 1997, capturing iconic and historic moments at the club through the lens of his camera.
In the second instalment of a regular series taking a look at the stories behind classic photos from his archives, Cozzi talks us through his most memorable pictures of the second batch of managers he photographed as the official club snapper, from Sean Dyche to Slaviša Jokanović...
“That's the first picture I took of Dyche as manager and that pic, in front of the club crest and him in his suit, sums up his demeanour. He carries himself with a certain amount of authority and a certain presence. He was no-nonsense.”
“This was classic Dyche, ready to work. A 'let's go' type of attitude. He didn't mess about and just loved being out on the training pitch. He was fantastic to work with and nothing was a problem for him, but he didn't suffer fools. He had an air of authority, like 'don't mess with me' without actually saying it.”
“I like the contrast of these two pics of Zola. The first is after the play-off final defeat and he's consoling Alex Geijo. That was classic Zola, putting his arm around players. They loved him and he loved his players. He was a gentleman.”
“Here you have got a smiley Zola at the start of the next summer in Italy. He loved being out on the training pitch and it didn't take long for that smile and optimism to be back on his face. That football was some of the best I've ever seen.”
“With every new manager, you watch his movements to see what he's like, how he does things and how he expresses himself. From the moment Sannino walked in, his hands were like a windmill. He never stopped gesticulating and it was never a struggle to get pictures of him. With some managers and coaches you'd be out there two hours trying to get pictures, but with him you were done after 10 minutes.”
“He was a typical Italian and very sartorially elegant. This was one of him suited and booted at Vicarage Road against Reading and being typically passionate. He was a larger than life character and you almost had too many pictures of him sometimes.”
“I only got 100 pictures of him split across three events: the day he turned up, a game against Hemel and a training session. This was from the friendly game against Hemel. He never got started really, but seemed nice enough.”
“I got even less pictures of McKinlay. This was a frame of him in what was obviously one of only two games in charge. He looked really happy to finally get the chance to be a No. 1 after 10 years as an assistant, but it just wasn't to be.”
“He came across as a really dour character, a really serious football person, but when I look back there are more pictures of him than I recall so perhaps I'm doing him a bit of a disservice. This one was back at the training ground after we had beaten Brighton and got promoted. It was the first time I had seen him loosen up.”
“This was the annual team picture from that season and players usually want that shoot over and done with in 30 seconds flat. But Jokanović was happy to pass the time and have a quiet word with Lloyd and enjoy the moment.”
Read Cozzi's Classics: The Managers Part 1 HERE and keep an eye out for the next instalment in the series, coming soon.