From Klopp, Pochettino and Ancelotti, Atletico Manager Simeone wanted anyone from this three to takeover his legacy at Atletico:
In a recent interview with Cadena SER, Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone discussed his future plans for the club. Though he recently signed an extension through 2027, Simeone admitted he has his eye on two big names as potential successors.
“One of the best – Klopp, [Carlo] Ancelotti, Pochettino… They are the coaches that I would like to be at Atletico,” Simeone said.
The Argentine manager mentioned Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp and Chelsea’s Mauricio Pochettino specifically. This suggests Simeone may try to lure the successful Premier League managers to Atletico when he eventually steps down.
Simeone was very complimentary towards Real Madrid’s Carlo Ancelotti as well, saying “I’m not friends with him, but we have a good relation. Respect, that’s the word.”
When asked who the best player he has managed was, Simeone named Antoine Griezmann but added “I would have liked to work with long-term rivals Messi or Ronaldo.”
️ Diego Simeone on the players he would like to coach:
“CRISTIANO & Messi.” pic.twitter.com/tWoPcUBnGw
— TCR. (@TeamCRonaldo) November 14, 2023
Though Simeone’s comments are interesting, it seems unlikely that Klopp or Pochettino would leave their Premier League posts anytime soon. Klopp is under contract at Liverpool through 2026, while Pochettino’s Chelsea deal runs until 2026. Both appear happy with their current challenges.
Still, Simeone has made it clear he admires both managers greatly, and will push Atletico Madrid to pursue them when he eventually moves on. For now, he remains focused on bringing success to the club he’s managed since 2011. Simeone is determined to leave Atletico with a legacy of sustained achievement.
Simeone’s Long Atletico Tenure
Simeone is the longest-serving manager in La Liga, having taken over Atletico Madrid in December 2011. In his over 11 years at the club so far, he has won 11 major trophies, including 2 La Liga titles in 2014 and 2021 (BBC), two UEFA Europa Leagues, one Copa del Rey, one Supercopa de Espana and and two UEFA Super Cups.
Simeone’s success has turned Atletico into genuine title challengers against Barcelona and Real Madrid.
Under his leadership, the team has developed an intense, defensively-solid identity that reflects Simeone’s own playing style as a combative midfielder (The Guardian). Though Atletico has less financial resources than Spain’s big two clubs, Simeone has maximized the squad’s potential.
Klopp’s Liverpool Transformation
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has also built an imposing team since taking charge in 2015. Under his management, Liverpool won the 2019 Champions League and won after 14 long years, last time they won in 2005.
Klopp has turned the Reds into one of Europe’s elite clubs again after years without major trophies. His success and exuberant personality have made him a fan favorite at Anfield. Klopp signed a contract extension in 2022 keeping him with Liverpool through 2026 (Liverpool FC). At age 56, he likely still has many good years ahead if he chooses to remain in management.
Pochettino’s Global Profile
After establishing himself at Southampton and Tottenham, Mauricio Pochettino has returned to the Premier League with Chelsea. The Argentine took Spurs to the 2019 Champions League final and built a reputation for nurturing young talent (BBC). Pochettino is still seen as a top manager, even though his time at PSG was not always successful in Europe.
His tactical flexibility and personable managing style could appeal to Atletico Madrid after Simeone’s intensity. Pochettino may want to manage a big European team again, after his tenure over, Simeone said he would love him to takeover.
Will Simeone succeed to get anyone of them?
While Simeone’s ambition to lure Klopp or Pochettino is clear, both managers have time remaining on their Premier League contracts. They have also built strong connections to their current clubs after several years in charge. Both Klopp and Pochettino seem keen to continue their long-term projects in England as of now (The Independent).
Unless either manager gets dismissed prematurely, Simeone would likely have to wait until at least 2025 or 2026 to realistically recruit one of his top choices. But with his own Atletico contract running until 2027, Simeone has given himself plenty of time to plot his successor.