Euro 2012

Managerial Style Special

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So far, there's been as much to keep an eye on off the pitch as on it. 

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With the first round of matches now over, what have we learned? Basically that an international football tournament is nothing if not an opportunity to laugh at national stereotypes, silly haircuts and a host of sartorial oddities. Here are a few of the touchline highlights:

 

The perils of 'his and his' clothing - Joachim Löw and assistant Hans-Dieter Flick

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Low and Flick have previous in the style stakes - flouncy neck scarves and silky v-necks became a hallmark of the last World Cup - but identical sleeve folding techniques and matching watches might be taking this German managerial bromance a bit too far.

The Lesson: Team uniforms are one thing, but style stalking your boss is a dangerous game.

 

Most authentic national stereotyping (eyewear category) - Denmark's coaching team

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There's nothing like having national quirks reaffirmed before your eyes. The Italian coach gesticulates a lot (see Cesare Prandelli, top) the English coach awkwardly sings the national anthem and the Scandinavians wear impeccably designed spectacles.

The Lesson: Some eyewear you can only get away with if you were born in Copenhagen.

Most innapropriate use of facial hair - Laurent Blanc

When your overall look is that of a secondary school department head, growing a soul patch (that bit of hair under his lip) is not a good match. It just looks like you missed a bit shaving.

The lesson: Know your limitations.

 

Most appropriate use of facial hair - Vicente Del Bosque

There's a time and a place for a moustache. And that time and place is on Vicente Del Bosque's upper lip for as long as anyone can remember. Sometimes a face is just built for a soup strainer as the Spain coach has demonstrated in a 25 year career. If Spain don't win this summer, he always has a second career option as a TV homicide detective on Canal+.

The lesson: Play to your strengths.

 

When Smart becomes Casual - Croatia manager Slaven Bilic

Yes, it was raining but that's not a reason for Bilic to ruin a decent enough suit by wearing a wooly hat he bought down the market.

The Lesson: Once you've got the basics right, make sure your accessories don't let the side down.

 

The Overdressed/Underdressed Award - Sweden v Ukraine

The man on the left, Sweden manager Erik Hamren, looks like he's nipping off to his daughter's wedding after the game. The other, Oleg Blokhin, looks like he's ready to settle down on the sofa in front of the darts.

The Lesson: Check the dresscode before you go.