Jurgen Klopp described Thomas Tuchel as a very good coach who he has watched grew as a manager from Mainz football academy to Mainz senior team and then Borussia Dortmund.
The similarity between Jurgen Klopp and Thomas Tuchel does not just lie in the fact that they are both from Germany, they started their managerial career at Mainz.
Aside from that, when Jurgen Klopp left Borussia Dortmund to Liverpool football club in 2015, the only coach Dortmund could think of appointing was Thomas Tuchel.
From Dortmund, the 47-year-old football manager attracted the attention of French Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint Germain. He spent two full seasons at PSG winning two league titles and led the club to the 2020 UEFA Champions League final against Bayern Munich. Unfortunately for him and PSG, Bayern won by a lone goal.
Weeks later, PSG sacked him due to a misunderstanding between him and the club’s board. He stayed jobless for over four months before Chelsea sacked Frank Lampard, his predecessor.
Within four months at Chelsea, Tuchel pushed Chelsea he met on the 9th spot to as far as 4th placed finish. Not only that, he led the team to win the 2021 UEFA Champions League final against Manchester City.
After his performance at Chelsea in the last part of the 2020-2021 season, most football pundits regarded Tuchel’s Chelsea as one of the main contenders for this season’s Premier League title.
Since the season started, Tuchel’s team has not disappointed the high rating they enjoyed ahead of the season. They have played two games already which they won with clean sheets.
On Saturday, August 28, 2021, at 17:30 Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool and Tuchel’s Chelsea will go head to head for the first time in the Premier League this season.
Ahead of the league game, Jurgen Klopp, whose team has not lost any match this season acknowledged Tuchel’s ability to be flexible in his approach to games over the years.
“It is difficult to judge a manager or a coach who you have never worked with,” Klopp told Sky Sports ahead of his meeting with Tuchel. “You can only do it by watching his teams play. With him, the ideas behind his match plans are always obvious, which I think is important.
“It is a footballing philosophy, it is a possession philosophy, but he is not stubborn or anything. It is flexible from a technical point of view at the highest level. He adapts to different situations. He adapted especially when he came from Mainz to Dortmund.
“I had the same challenge to face, incidentally. Suddenly, you have a completely different quality of player to work with and you have to deal with that. Then when you go to PSG that is another step and how he dealt with that I thought was impressive.
“This is a really good coach from an interesting generation in Germany.”
Jurgen Klopp and Thomas Tuchel head to head
Thomas Tuchel and Jurgen Klopp have faced each other in 14 games in all competitions. Ten of the games came when the two football managers were in German Bundesliga – Klopp with Dortmund and Tuchel with Mainz.
In the 14 times, the German tacticians have met, Jurgen Klopp beat Tuchel 9 times while Tuchel managed to beat Klopp two times. Their other three meetings ended in a draw.
Hence their meeting on Saturday would make it the 15th meeting between the two coaches and it is expected to be a cracker due to the interesting form of both Chelsea and Liverpool so far this season.