Jurgen Klopp wins FIFA Men’s Coach of the Year, Alisson the best goalkeeper
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has won the FIFA Men’s Coach of the Year award, which was presented to him last night (Monday) in Milan.
Klopp beat off competition from the likes of Manchester City’s Pep Guardiola and Mauricio Pochettino for the prestigious prize. He also thanked the club, adding that whoever doesn’t love Liverpool, has no heart.
“It is great, nobody expected this 20, 10, five, four years ago that I would be standing here,” said Klopp.
“We know what an incredible job you [Mauricio Pochettino] did and what Pep did. I have to say thank you to my outstanding club Liverpool FC.
“To the owners thank you, they gave me an incredible team. I have to thank my team – as a coach you can only be as good as your team is. I’m really proud of being manager of such an incredible bunch of players.”
The German also took the opportunity to reveal that he has joined the initiative set up in August 2017 by Manchester United’s Juan Mata called Common Goal, which means he now donates 1% of his salary to charity.
“I’m really proud and happy that I can announce that from today on I am a member of the Common Goal family,” said Klopp. A round of applause followed that, after which he continued, “A few people obviously know [about] it – if not, Google it. It’s a great thing.”
Apparently, the world took his words as a command, because the Common Goal website crashed moments after he had said that.
Despite Van Dijk missing out on the top prize, Klopp wasn’t the only Liverpool man among the winners. Alisson Becker was voted best goalkeeper, ahead of Manchester City’s Ederson Moraes and Barcelona’s Marc-Andre ter Stegen. And just like Klopp, the Brazilian fully deserved it.
Meanwhile, the Player of the Year award went to Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi, who ended up in front of Cristiano Ronaldo and our own Virgil van Dijk. It is the sixth time the Argentine has been voted the world’s best (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, and now 2019). Megan Rapinoe, the American international forward, was chosen as the women’s best player, ahead of Alex Morgan and England international Lucy Bronze. Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa won the fair play award for ordering his team to allow Aston Villa to score, after they scored a controversial goal themselves in their 1-1 draw in the Championship.
We feel for Virgil who certainly deserved to win too, but choosing a player who scored 51 goals in 50 games last season can hardly be described as wrong, whatever feelings or other stats may tell you.