Some of them have been there, a few of them have done it – but do the managers who are guiding 24 national sides at Euro 2016 really know what their players are going through?
Here, Sportsmail takes a look at the men in the dugout when they too were idolised as players and the football cards representing them that were swapped and bartered for by children at the time.
France – Didier Deschamps
Deschamps enjoyed a lot of success with a number of teams he played in. He started his career at Nantes where he made 111 appearances. He left for Marseille in 1989. While there he won the French league twice before claiming the Champions League trophy.
But it was during his time with Juventus that he earned legendary status among their supporters. He was part of a side that won Serie A three times, Coppa Italia once, the Champions League once as well as one Intercontinental Cup, one UEFA Super Cup and one UEFA Intertoto Cup.
He has made a steady amount of progress as a manager, too. He has been in charge of France since 2012 and guided them to the quarter-finals of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Win percentage as France manager: 58.70 per cent
Switzerland – Vladimir Petkovic
Although Petkovic began his career in Bosnia, he spent most of his years playing in Switzerland. He never reached 100 appearances with any club – 87 at Chur 97 was the closest he came.
He eventually retired from playing in 1997 and became a coach. He took his first job as player-coach with Swiss club Bellinzona before taking over at Malcantone Agno, where he stayed from 1999 to 2004.
He was manager of Lazio before he was offered the Switzerland job. The Coppa Italia was his one piece of silverware at the Serie A club.
Win percentage as Switzerland manager: 52.94
Albania – Gianni De Biasi
De Biasi’s playing career lasted 25 years. His career was never destined for greatness after he was loaned by Inter Milan to Reggiana. From there he failed to impress before he found his place at Brescia. There he made 161 appearances, scoring 14 goals.
His managerial career, which began in 1990, also took time to get established – and is a work in progress. In 2011, De Biasi took over at Albania after a disappointing season in charge of Napoli.
He became the first coach to lead Albania to European Championship qualification when they secured their passage to France last October.
Win percentage as Albania manager: 39.47 per cent.
Romania – Anghel Iordanescu
Iordandescu was with only two clubs when he was playing: Steaua Bucharest and OFI Crete. He first joined Steaua Bucharest in 1968 and didn’t leave until 1982.
As a manager, he has been around the domestic and international circuit. He first took the Romania job in 1993 and lead his side to the 1994 World Cup in the United States where Romania made it to the quarter-finals.
He continued his good work by guiding them to Euro 1996 in England and France for the 1998 World Cup. He managed them again between 2002 and 2004, and came out of…