Under pressure Jurgen Klopp and Chris Wilder to rekindle rivalry this weekend after a war of words this season
Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Under pressure Jurgen Klopp and Chris Wilder to rekindle rivalry this weekend after a war of words this season

Jurgen Klopp and Chris Wilder will rekindle their rivalry this weekend when their two sides meet in the Premier League.

Sheffield United host Liverpool on Sunday with both managers under increasing pressure this season.

A lot has changed since the two men were the standout candidates for LMA manager of the year in 2019/20.

Klopp eventually won the award after guiding the Reds to their first top flight title in 30 years.

Wilder received plenty of plaudits last term, though, as he guided the Blades to their highest league position since 1992.


They finished ninth in their first Premier League campaign in 12 years and Klopp himself praised the job being done at Bramall Lane.

Yet now United are rock bottom of the table and 14 points from safety. They’ve lost 20 of their 25 league matches and it looks like a question of when, rather than if, they will return to the Championship.

As for Klopp, his side have lost their last four league games. Liverpool are 19 points behind leaders Manchester City and not only look unlikely to defend their title, but there are question marks about whether they’ll even finish in the top four.

Jurgen Klopp and Chris Wilder war of words

Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Off the pitch, there is also a very different relationship between Klopp and Wilder now.

It started when the former wanted five substitutions to be allowed in the league this season. Wilder disagreed and was dubbed “selfish” by Klopp.

Since then the Blades boss seems to have taken a few jabs at his rival in the press. Wilder recently said he respects all managers, but doesn’t like a few of them.

Whether this was aimed at Klopp or not is unclear, but there is certainly no love lost between the pair.

Which makes this weekend’s meeting between them all the more interesting.

Both have been criticised recently for the way they have conducted themselves in the press.

As the Mirror outlines, some felt Klopp was unnecessarily rude to a reporter earlier this month following his side’s 4-1 defeat to Man City.

Meanwhile, Wilder went on a bizarre rant in his pre-match press conference ahead of Saturday’s loss at Fulham.

“I’m not bothered in psychologists or do-gooders or lefties, I don’t know what you’re allowed to say,” the 53-year-old was quoted by The Daily Star.

“I’m the football manager, so I’m saying it as it is.”

It will be interesting to see the body language between the pair this weekend and at least one of them will be left disappointed with the result. Sparks could fly.

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