Defensive progressions – Issue 9 (April 2011)
Dario Gradi MBE is one of only three managers to have taken charge of over 1,000 senior games for the same club – the others being Manchester United duo Sir Matt Busby and Sir Alex Ferguson.
Gradi, who was born in Milan, first oversaw the Crewe Alexandra first-team in June 1983 with the simple task of keeping the Railwaymen in the Football League.
In the past 28 years he has overseen numerous promotions, as well as fostering an incredible list of talent, that includes former England stars David Platt and Geoff Thomas, plus Danny Murphy, Rob Jones, Ashley Ward and Dean Ashton.
The 69-year-old moved upstairs to assume a Director of Football role in 2007, though after spells as caretaker following the departure of managers Steve Holland and Gudjon Thordarson, he returned to the hotseat in 2009.
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