Saturday night’s Champions League final bout in Paris is sure to be a clash of the ages as Liverpool face Real Madrid in a replay of the 2017/18 final.
The final is set to include a list of star names such as Karim Benzema, Mohamed Salah, and Sadio Mane.
However, you can not look any further than the battle between the two men on the touchline, Jürgen Klopp and Carlo Ancelotti.
Although Klopp and Ancelotti have not faced each other in a Liverpool versus Real Madrid derby, they will not be short of experience when it comes to managing against one another from the sideline.
Klopp has faced Ancelotti ten times in his career, winning three, drawing three and losing four. He has gained a points average of 1.20 per match but will be hoping to gain much more than that come Saturday night.
Both managers are not short of Champions League experience, especially in winning the competition. Klopp has been in three previous Champions League Finals, with Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool respectively, winning just one of the three encounters in 2018/19 when Liverpool faced Tottenham Hotspur.
This can of course be compared to the statistics of the Italian veteran Ancelotti, who has won three Champions League finals with Real Madrid and AC Milan.
Ancelotti’s return to the Spanish Capital was met with some distaste from both the English and Spanish media after leaving the Everton job very abruptly in June of 2021.
However, after leading Los Blancos to yet another Champions League final, the club is backing him to add another title to his illustrious trophy cabinet.
Jürgen Klopp’s Managerial Style
According to Management professor Ralf Lanwehr, “The new form of power is charisma”and one thing which Jürgen Klopp prides himself on is being the most charismatic and energetic manager in the world.
The German has always led by example as he drives his leadership qualities through accountability, communication, and knowledge sharing.
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Although he is passionate, he does not take himself too seriously unlike some managers who are firm and regimented. A core characteristic of Klopp’s management style is his ability to place the players in the foreground and really trust them on and off the pitch, making them better as a result.
You can see this as they are both motivated and self-confident in their abilities. At the time of writing this article, Jürgen Klopp has just won the Premier League’s Barclays Manager of the Season.
So, there will be no doubt the German will be pumped up to add more silverware to his collection before the 2021/22 season comes to an end.
Carlo Ancelotti’s Managerial Style
The Real Madrid manager on the other hand is a more laid-back figure, backing up his managerial prowess with a cabinet full of major trophies.
Ancelotti’s squad has an average age of 27.5 years, therefore being laid-back and patient is imperative to their success. At a wealthy club like Madrid, it would be easy to take charge and change the whole squad.
However, at his time of departure from the Everton job in 2021, he stated that “There is a clear vision from the owner and the board to deliver trophies” at Real Madrid.
Like Klopp, he has trust in his players and this laissez-faire approach to management is vital in Madrid’s free-flowing, exciting style of play.
Both deploy variations of a 4-3-3 formation with Klopp using a more relaxed false 9 in Diogo Jota or Roberto Firmino, whereas Ancelotti uses the brilliance of Karim Benzema upfront as his central striker.
Come Saturday night, it will be interesting to see if these formations are able to cancel each other out and make for an iconic Champions League thriller in Paris.
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