Gérard Houllier is a highly respected French football manager. Most famously, he has managed Paris Saint-Germain, Liverpool, Olympique Lyonnais, and Aston Villa, as well as the French National Team.
Since 2012 Houllier has been Head of Global Football for Red Bull. At Red Bull, he is responsible for the development and sporting performance of the entire Red Bull family of soccer clubs including the New York Red Bulls, Austria’s Red Bull Salzburg, Germany’s Red Bull Leipzig, Red Bull Brazil and the Red Bull Ghana academies. Due to his wealth of experience as a manager, a motivator, a planner and a communicator, he is in high demand as a motivational speaker.
Houllier started his coaching career with Le Touquet Athletic Club and US Noeux-les-Mines before taking charge of RC Lens in 1982, moving on to Paris Saint-Germain FC three years later. He guided the club to the title in his first season in charge, at the same time becoming the technical director of the French Football Federation (FFF) in 1988 and holding the post for the next decade. He coached the French national team between 1992 and 1993. Under his watchful eye Thierry Henry, David Trezeguet and Nicolas Anelka were allowed to mature and show early signs of their talents, with France winning the UEFA European Under-18 Championship in 1996 and 1997.
More success followed at Liverpool FC, which he managed from 1998-2004, most notably in 2000-01 with victories in the UEFA Cup, FA Cup and League Cup – becoming the first club to win three knock-out competitions in one season. This triple win is still considered the finest moment in the club’s illustrious history. After five major trophies in six seasons Houllier left Liverpool in 2004, returning to France to guide Olympique Lyonnais to league titles in each of his seasons in charge.
He was part of UEFA’s and FIFA’s Technical Committee in the 2002 and 2006 World Cup finals, and Technical Director for the French Football Federation during the 2010 finals. He became manager of Aston Villa in September 2010, before stepping down in June 2011 for health reasons.
He has been awarded the Légion d’Honneur for his services to French football, and an honorary OBE for services to British football.