The rivalry between Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola has to be one of the best managerial rivalries in the history of football. Two world-class managers with drastically different approaches to their game-style.
Pep Guardiola has always loved having possession of the ball and attacking in a ruthless manner. Jose Mourinho, meanwhile, has preferred his team to have a defensive mindset and rely more on the counter-attack.
Some world-class players have played under both Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola
While both Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola have given us some classic affairs on the pitch, it wouldn't have been possible without the presence of some top players. Both these managers were blessed to have a star-studded lineup at their disposal at the different clubs they have managed.
Among those superstar players, some of them were lucky enough to play under both Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola. On that note, let's have a look at those top players fortunate to play under both these amazing managers.
Honorable mention: Cesc Fabregas
#5 Kevin De Bruyne
Kevin De Bruyne is one of the finest playmakers in the world right now. With his superb passing and creative skills, the Belgian possesses the power to change the game with the ball at his feet.
Having started his career with Genk, the central attacking midfielder was signed by Chelsea in 2012. During his Chelsea career, De Bruyne spent most of his time on loan in Germany with Werder Bremen. The then Blues manager Jose Mourinho recognized his talents but wasn't able to accommodate the Belgian midfielder in his starting lineup. For a very short while, the midfielder played under the Portuguese manager before leaving permanently for VfL Wolfsburg.
De Bruyne grew into a very dynamic and dangerous midfielder at Wolfsburg, which encouraged Manchester City to sign him in the summer of 2015. Since then. the former Chelsea man has been one of the star players in the Premier League. Especially under Pep Guardiola's management, he has blossomed to the best of his abilities. He has been a massive contributor in goals for the Cityzens and continues to do so under the guidance of the Spanish manager.
#4 Arjen Robben
The Dutch winger arrived at Chelsea in the summer of 2004 to become a key member of the squad new manager Jose Mourinho was building back then. Arjen Robben was young and growing then and was yet to be polished.
Under the former Porto manager, he showed promise of developing into one fine attacker with his sweet left-foot, amazing dribbling and beautiful creative abilities. He left Chelsea after spending three seasons with the Blues before joining Real Madrid after being trouble by injuries. Jose Mourinho left the London club in the same season. The duo won back-to-back Premier League titles together.
Robben met Pep Guardiola at Bayern Munich when the former Barcelona manager joined them in 2013. The Spaniard, being the great tactical manager he is, impressed and helped the winger improve his game even as he was nearing his 30s. Along with the dynamic Dutch international, Guardiola won three back-to-back Bundesliga titles.
It was more than just trophies for Robben. Guardiola's insights and his tactical know-how about the game amused him to the core. In an interview in 2019, the former Bayern forward confirmed that he is a big fan of the current Manchester City manager and considers him the best.