German managers are all the rage these days, and two of the biggest names on the scene are Jurgen Klopp and Thomas Tuchel.
Tuchel was the man brought in to replace Klopp at both Mainz and Borussia Dortmund, so it’s safe to say that the pair’s stories are more than a little intertwined, and with both managers now in the Premier League, we’re set for another entry to the saga.
Let’s take a look back at every meeting between the two managers.
2009/10 was Tuchel’s first year in the Bundesliga after leading Mainz back to the top flight. His first clash with Klopp had all the ingredients to be a thriller, but it ended up being an absolute stinker.
Neither side had reached their final form at this point and that was made abundantly clear as they played out an utterly forgettable 0-0 draw.
There was a little history to be made here, however. In the 88th minute, on came 17-year-old Mario Gotze for his Dortmund debut.
Klopp had Dortmund in a top-four race when they next met Mainz in April 2010, but that didn’t stop Tuchel and his mid-table side from walking away with the points.
Even the soon-to-be-famous defensive duo of Mats Hummels and Neven Subotic weren’t enough to stop Mainz, who scraped a 1-0 win thanks to a first-half goal from Real Madrid loanee Adam Szalai.
Mainz had just equalled the Bundesliga record for seven consecutive wins to start a season, and by the time they met Dortmund on matchday ten, this was second vs first.
Dortmund would go on to win the Bundesliga title this season, and the form they showed in this 2-0 victory explains why. An excellent solo goal from Gotze got things started before Lucas Barrios bagged a second to wrap things up.
Having exchanged victories in the last two games, Tuchel and Klopp went back to sharing the spoils when they met in March 2011.
An early header from Hummels had Dortmund ahead after just nine minutes, but Mainz spoiled the fun in the 88th minute when they equalised through Petar Sliskovic.
Klopp had a bit of a meltdown after the goal, believing play should have been stopped for an earlier injury. He screamed and pushed his way around the dugout, but he wouldn’t get much sympathy from Mainz.
After a miserable start to the season which had Dortmund in eighth in the Bundesliga, a 2-1 win over Mainz proved to be the catalyst for a title-winning unbeaten run.
Klopp’s men had to come from behind and needed a 90th-minute goal from Lukasz Piszczek to win the three points, after which Dortmund didn’t lose all season. They ended up winning the title, eight points clear of Bayern Munich.
By March 2012, Dortmund were dominant and Mainz were floundering in mid-table, but Tuchel’s men still put up a real fight.
Jakub Blaszczykowski put Dortmund ahead in the first half, but Mohamed Zidan tied things up in the 74th minute. It looked like we might get a nervy end to the game, but Shinji Kagawa struck three minutes later to restore Dortmund’s lead.
What’s that? You want another 2-1 Dortmund win? Well, you’re in luck!
The narrative changed a little in this one as it was Mainz who took the lead early on, but a Robert Lewandowski double restored order before half time. The Poland international bagged a backheel volley and a stunning lob, justifying his reputation as one of the best around.
There was no goal from Tuchel’s men this time, but Dortmund still managed to grab their customary two when the two sides met in March 2013.
Marco Reus needed just 30 seconds to put the ball in the back of the net to kick things off, but Dortmund had to wait another 86 minutes before Lewandowski could tap home for some breathing room.
3-1 this time? Someone’s getting adventurous.
After a dull 70 minutes, this game really sparked into life with a corker of a free kick from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Mainz answered back four minutes later with an Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting penalty, but when Elkin Soto was sent off for a deliberate handball in the penalty area in the 78th minute, there was only one way this was going to go.
Lewandowski converted the penalty, and he grabbed another from the spot late on after a clumsy foul by a young goalkeeper by the name of Loris Karius.
The most entertaining meeting between these two managers in Germany would actually end up being their last.
A couple of awful deflected goals had the score at 1-1 after 14 minutes, but Lewandowski tapped his side back ahead soon after, and the second half was just as hectic.
Shinji Okazaki pounced on a poor back-pass to tie things up, before Piszczek headed Dortmund back ahead, and the tie was decided by a Marco Reus penalty after Mainz’s Niko Bungert was sent off for his own handball.
Dortmund were in Tuchel’s control in April 2016, when he came up against old foe Klopp and his Liverpool side in the Europa League quarter-finals.
Tuchel ended a run of six straight defeats when he managed a 1-1 draw with the Reds, who were rocking an attacking line of Divock Origi, Adam Lallana and Philippe Coutinho. Yikes.
The first leg wasn’t too much fun, but we soon learned that they were just saving it for the return fixture.
It looked like Dortmund were waltzing through to the semis when they rocked up to Anfield and went 2-0 up within nine minutes, but Liverpool were not prepared to lie down.
Origi pulled one back in the 48th minute, but Reus’ strike eight minutes later looked to have killed the game off once more.
Then Liverpool went a little wild.
Coutinho netted in the 66th and Mamadou Sakho headed home in the 78th, but Dortmund were still leading on away goals until Dejan Lovren popped up with a 91st-minute winner to send Liverpool through.
Tuchel had moved to PSG by the time the pair next squared up, but his eight-year wait for a victory over Klopp continued as Liverpool ran out 3-2 winners.
Daniel Sturridge headed Liverpool ahead and James Milner made it two from the spot, but an excellent volley from Thomas Meunier had PSG back in the game shortly before the break.
Kylian Mbappe tied things up in the 83rd minute and looked to have earned his side a draw, but Tuchel was again ruing a late winner as Roberto Firmino smashed home in the 92nd minute.
Eight years and four months after his first win over Klopp, Tuchel grabbed his second.
It was a dominant victory for PSG, who were two goals up by the 37th minute thanks to Bernat and Neymar, although Liverpool did pull one back through James Milner from the penalty spot before the break.
Liverpool had a handful of chances to snatch an equaliser, but PSG never looked too troubled and ended up celebrating when all was said and done.
Now over in England, it was Tuchel who struck first blood against Klopp as a Mason Mount goal handed his Chelsea side a 1-0 win over Liverpool.
Chelsea should have had a second goal as well. Timo Werner had the ball in the back of the net before Mount, only to see his effort ruled out because he has arms.
Don’t you love VAR?
Chelsea put in a trademark Chelsea performance under Tuchel here, holding on for a point despite having Reece James sent off.
James had set up the opening goal of the game as Kai Havertz sent an angled header beyond Alisson, though he was dismissed just before half time for handball, allowing Mohamed Salah to equalise from the spot.
However, Tuchel got his tactics spot on as the Blues kept their hosts out during a second-half siege.
While this game was an Anfield classic, it did little for either sides’ title hopes.
First-half efforts from Sadio Mane and Salah had Liverpool ahead after just 26 minutes, but Mateo Kovacic’s barnstorming strike got Chelsea back into the game before Christian Pulisic went through on goal to equalise.
Both sides had chances to win but Edouard Mendy and Caoimhin Kelleher stood tall to earn a point for both teams.