Josep Maria Minguella: The master mind behind the selection of our talent
sure you've heard of him. Even if you're not an FC Barcelona fan. In
Tokenchampions we are fortunate to have one of the most important
players in the history of world football.
talent discoverer of talents
has starred in almost all the management of the top stars of the
Promoter of the Tokenchampions methodology, in this post we want to introduce you to Josep Maria Minguella, responsible for players like Diego Armando Maradona, Lionel Messi, Romário, Hristo Stoichkov and Rivaldo to become azulgranas stars.
Starting from the ground up
Josep Maria Minguella studied law at the University of Barcelona and later qualified as a football coach while working as a producer of Italian westerns.
He was called to help with the Barça youth team and with the arrival of Vic Buckingham as coach, he was hired as an interpreter because he was the only one in the team who spoke English.
In 1971, when Rinus Michels was appointed coach of the club, Minguella became his second-in-command. He worked alongside Michels for four seasons and then served as secretary of Hercules C.F. for another year.
The experience he gained as an interpreter and assistant coach helped him to get to know the players in depth: the characteristics of their football technique, their strengths, the way they integrated with the rest of the team, and so on. This is how he learned to spot great talents and to distinguish the needs of the team as a whole.
First to notice Maradona in Europe
the end of the seventies Minguella becomes a football agent and
participates in the recruitment of many players for F.C. Barcelona.
At that time, Argentinean football was a model to follow in Spain . Buenos Aires was a city that had a unique characteristic: it had 10 or 12 teams in the First Division depending on the season, so it concentrated a great amount of talent in a great variety of players.
Josep Maria Minguella had the opportunity to travel to Argentina on several occasions during those years and in one of them he met Maradona, with whom he began to negotiate after the 1978 World Cup.
Although the signing of Maradona took several years to forge, Minguella was the first in Europe to take notice of the Argentine player . In 1982 "El Pelusa" arrived in Barcelona and marked the turning point in Minguella's professional career: he was the first of a series of signings that would mark the best years in the club's history.
Lionel Messi: A talent discovered in childhood
After the signing of Maradona, other important players followed: Stoichkov, Romario, Rivaldo, Rene Higuita and Lionel Messi, whom he had his eye on as a child.
In the 2000s Spanish clubs like Real Madrid and FC Barcelona didn't look at teenage players as much as they do now. At that time players were signed when they were 20 years old, as was the case with Josep Guardiola, former Barça player and coach, who turned up at Minguella's office looking for an agent.
One day Minguella received a video that had been made of Messi at school and noticed what we all saw in Messi when he started to succeed at FC Barcelona: an incredible speed to move the ball around the pitch and a unique leadership ability to drive his team forward.
a time when they were not signing players from the football base,
Josep Maria Minguella had the vision to bet on a raw talent that,
over the years, would end up proving him right.
Maria Minguella's legacy: an exquisite care that marks the beginning
of the Tokenchampions methodology.
The process of discovering and signing the great promises of football was possible thanks to unique values and a unique way of working: exquisite care for the players' needs , both physical and emotional, direct communication with their families , and constant monitoring during their process of adaptation to life in Barcelona .
If they had listened to him, Minguella would also have brought in Kylian Mbappé and Cristiano Ronaldo would have been a Barcelona player instead of going to Manchester United.
Today Josep Maria Minguella is the driving force behind a unique methodology and one of the main people responsible for the selection of the best talents in world football to form part of the Tokenchampions team.
Being one of those who knows the most about football , Minguella guarantees the transmission of knowledge to a management team led by Carlos Salas, CEO of Tokenchampions, and Junior Minguella, son of our protagonist and Chief Sport Officer of this investment fund.
the world of football there are specialties and signing is one of
them, very important for the future of a club
key position and an important part of the footballing and economic
success of the club depends on the decisions about who is signed or
who is transferred. Getting the right person is vital. It must be an
expert, the best if possible. Putting yourself in the hands of
amateurs is expensive".
Josep Maria Minguella.