This is the battle for the European crown people it comes to us this Saturday. Now if you aren’t excited for the Champions League final maybe go talk to someone or see a doctor because it is about to be “HUGE”.
We have the all English final between Tottenham Hotspurs and Liverpool. The thing I want to talk about though isn’t between the teams but between two managers who I feel both need this trophy to establish themselves as elite managers. Now some of you may say “Leg Fu*k you talking about they are great managers!” Yeah but neither of them are known for actually winning the trophy. They are known for making brilliant sides that always challenge the trophy winners. Don’t just take my word for it look at the stats.
Pochettino began his manager career in Spain for Espanyol, where he gained recognition not for winning trophies, but for defeating Guardiola’s Barcelona 2-1 for the first time in the 27 years. He went on to win no trophies.
He then moved on to Southampton where he led them to an 8th place finish after defeating defending champs Manchester city the most notable win of the season and again 0 trophies.
Next Poch took his talents to Tottenham where we have seen him make magic happen and absolutely break the fans hearts. He has dealt with many different players, systems, and always seems to be successful. BUT not successful enough with another club of his having great performances, but 0 trophies.
Jurgen Klopp started his manager career at Mainz in 2001, where he would enjoy a wonderful spell actually earning the club promotion from the second league. The club went on to be relegated again and after failing to be promoted the following year Klopp resigned with great performances but 0 trophies.
The next 5 years Klopp spent with Borussia Dortmund his most successful side we have seen. In his first season Klopp actually guided Dortmund over Bayern Munich for the German Super Cup. Klopp would enjoy a record breaking season in 10/11 season as he earned the double with Dortmund winning the league, and DFB Pokal. This is Klopp’s best managerial year to date trophy wise, since after these wins he would go on without another trophy until the 14/15 super cup. In his time at Dortmund he managed to lose in 3 finals as well as being edged in the league by Bayern Munich repeatedly as they began their 7 year dominance on the league.
Klopp then moved on to Liverpool in 2015 where he has signed some world class talent with the likes of Virgil Van Dijk, Mo Salah, and Alisson. Klopp would have a bit of a slow start as he implemented his way of football. He would go on to reach a UCL final, as well as challenging for league titles. He went on to win none of it after coming so close and continuing his 5 year trophy drought. After losing his 4th final he has become known for bottling it in the last game.
Both of these coaches are on the cusp of being world class. They have the style, the passion, and the love of whatever club they go to. All that’s missing is the silverware to prove your success. Yes Klopp has some trophies, but looking at his record you could see that he should have a lot more trophies. After 18 years of coaching and you only have 2 titles and 2 Super Cups you may want to fill that trophy cabinet.
Klopp vs. Pochettino is exactly what the football word needed to see. Two teams that are ITCHING for glory after being the sucker on the end of other English clubs victories. Liverpool and Tottenham have both gone so long without a trophy that this contest should be excellent. Liverpool are the better team without a doubt looking at the roster and depth they have, but Pochettino always has a plan regardless what team or manager he faces.
Klopp and Pochettino have faced off 9 times with Poch only winning 1 of those games, drawing 4, and losing the other 4. I would say Tottenham is the underdog but Pochettino has made that work for him in the build up for this Champions League run. This being his first chance at some real silverware I expect Poch to have a hell of a game plan to take on this record breaking Liverpool side.
This might be bold but I am feeling 3-2 Spurs… SON with a brace!
Feel free to debate that^ on Twitter. @shopaaj