These Soccer Players And Managers “Hate” Each Other



The biggest Player and Coach Hostilities in the World

A very special relationship - José Mourinho and Arsène Wenger.
A very special relationship - José Mourinho and Arsène Wenger. Photo: Getty Images

A pronounced antipathy is actually rare among football professionals. But it does happen. Between teammates sometimes, between opponents more often, but also among professionals of very different generations and between footballers who don’t really have much to do with each other. But they “can’t stand each other at all” and are more than unsympathetic to each other.

Occasions and causes are widely scattered. Sometimes it is due to soccer incidents such as fouls and rude attacks. Sometimes it is politically justified and then there is the topic complex Sex and Wags (Wives And Girlfriends of high-profile professional athletes).

In the following article, we have summarized the whole spectrum of pronounced football rankings. Among them are real footballing ‘hate relationships’, amusing trifle and medial ‘duo’ – football enmities that are not footballers and only occasionally conjured up from the boulevard.

By the way, there are no 60 professionals in our post. Because some professionals appear several times. And you could have bet on these guys. By the way, the whole thing almost ended with a knock out for a superstar. He definitely lost the special encounter on points. And that doesn’t fit at all to ego and attitude of the alpha male. But more of that at position 6 of the post. We placed 11th with our favorite in the category “The younger one stretches out the woman to his buddy as well as friend and mentor”. An erotic actress and mother of 2 children. Father? The buddy.

The meanest foul in the history of football

The dark side of Roy Keane.
The dark side of Roy Keane. Photo: Getty Images

And the number one becomes German. He appears several times in our ranking and even his fans consider him a little cranky.

He also made the claim during his career that two playing positions can only be taken by more than just crazy guys. That’s why he quickly lost his nickname. First, he moved to the enemy within the Bundesliga at the beginning of his professional career and took the tram home while his own game was still running. Then he got into a fight with various colleagues at his new club, especially with those who even remotely looked like competitors on his position. And finally, he was openly bickering with the one nobody wanted to be open with before and that was the “gorilla in space”.

But there he prevailed. Although the “gorilla in space” still thinks that if he had played at that time, another team would have become world champion. He would have done better if he had shot that one goal. Then a little football fairy tale would have turned into a real party.

But we want to start with one of the meanest fouls in football history. Begun by a player who is partly ritualistically revered by the fans of his club.


Hostilities 30 - 26: From the Irish national hero with the dark side to the fake news about the best two

30. Roy Keane vs Alf-Inge Haaland – The Dark Side of Roy K. aka ‘Schitzo’

Keane vs. Haaland - a bad Duel. Mandatory Credit: Gary MPrior/Allsport
Keane vs. Haaland - a bad Duel. Mandatory Credit: Gary MPrior/Allsport

There was a fight with Peter Schmeichel, he called his coach a wanker and published a second biography under the motto “Ten dirty stories. We are talking about Roy Keane, whose performances for Ireland and ManU were remarkable as well as his scandals and player enmities.

Example 1 – After the official Manchester United championship celebration in May 1999, Roy Keane joined David Beckham, Andy Cole, Dwight Yorke, and Gary Neville at a late hour in an economy called “Henry´s Bar”. Keane’s flirting attempts with two ladies in attendance turned out to be not very promising, which brought the midfielder to his senses. One of the women reported later: “He was very, very drunk and as aggressive as you can imagine.” Keane kicked one of the ladies, poured his beer over the other’s head and was finally taken into custody by the police and spent the night in the detention cell. He was not convicted for this.

Example 2 – During the preparation of the training camp in Spain, Keane first criticized the organization of the association (“stuporous!”). He then fought with goalkeeper coach Pat Bonner, co-coach Ian Evans, and goalkeeper Alan Kelly as they simply didn’t want to see Keane criticizing them for the lax training plan for the goalkeepers. The Irish federation first sent Keane home but offered him a pardon. The only condition: Keane should apologize. Which, of course, he didn’t. Without their best player, Ireland lost to Spain in the round of sixteen.

Example 3 – It’s astonishing that Keane was still Ireland’s national player at that time. He had already clashed with coach McCarthy in November 2001. McCarthy had accused his protégé of faking an injury before the return leg in the World Cup play-offs against Iran. Keane, all diplomat: “You were a bad player and you are a bad coach! The only reason why I have to deal with you is that you are somehow the coach of my country and you are not even Irish, you English…

A special enmity

Clashes on the Football field.
Clashes on the Football field. Photo: Getty Images
But Keane had a special hostility towards Alf-Inge Haaland. A story of revenge, testosterone, and dirtiness.

And the absolute opposite of sportsmanship. The story begins in 1997 with a foul by Keane in the Manchester-Derby. Keane broke his cruciate ligament in a harmless duel with Haaland. And even worse, lying on the ground and Haaland called him an actor. Everybody was amused by Haaland. Especially since he had noticed that Keane was drunk and not really able to play.

Keane couldn’t let it sit on him and foul the Norwegian deliberately and purposefully at the next sporting encounter. This time he was seriously injured at his knee. Keane was suspended for a total of eight games and received a hefty fine.

As if Keane’s legendary foul against Manchester City player Alf-Inge Haaland hadn’t been bad enough, the Irishman followed in his first biography (published in summer 2002). “I was waiting until five minutes before the end. I hit him very hard. There! Take that, you cunt!” That’s how he described his foul, which, contrary to popular belief, didn’t end the Norwegian’s career. It becomes understandable why he probably had the nickname ‘Schitzo’ at ManU. At least that’s what former ManU player Lee Sharpe claimed.

29. Jens Lehmann vs. Oliver Kahn - "Mad "Jens vs. "King" Kahn

Mad Jens vs. Olli Kahn (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Mad Jens vs. Olli Kahn (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Kahn vs. Lehmann – the German goalkeeper duel with a certain pinch of antipathy. The top dog against the upstart. Cojones-Kahn vs. Mad Jens Bad Ass Lehmann.

When coach Jürgen Klinsmann took over the German national team in 2004, Oliver Kahn was the undisputed number 1. He had just brought Germany into the final of the 2002 World Cup with incredible performances and was at the height of his career. Kahn was good, really good. He had only one weakness. Kahn could hold balls but not play football. The opposite of a sweeper-keeper a la Manuel Neuer. And the “innovator” Jürgen Klinsmann was looking for something in this direction. There was a goalkeeper who played along and who could sometimes be expected to pass back without being prone to panic attacks. So he set the ball rolling and provided for an unprecedented duel for the number 1 in the German goal. Icon Kahn versus the man who played a fantastic season at Arsenal in 2006 but then lost control of himself at decisive moments. Like in the final of the Champions League 2006.

Klinsmann bet on rotation in the German goal. Sometimes one, sometimes the other. When the dispute escalated before the 2006 World Cup and both goalies demanded a decision before the 2006 World Cup, Klinsmann decided. For Lehmann, who was now set as number 1. Kahn was then not good at talking to his colleague. Even today, the two ex-keepers are still dueling each other as football experts for different broadcasters. And Kahn is pretty sure that he would have held Grosso’s shot in the semi-final between Germany and Italy at the 2006 World Cup, which brought the 1-0 win for Italy.

Instead of the hoped-for culmination of his most successful season at FC Arsenal, Mad Jens experienced a pitch-black evening in the most important match for his club Arsenal in London. After a red card in the 18th minute, the success story of the Londoners ended in Paris in the 51st national champions final with a 1:2 (1:0) against the star ensemble of FC Barcelona. The Gunners should not have played more than 70 minutes with 10 men…

28. Pele vs. Diego Maradona - Who is the best footballer in the world?

Pele or Maradona? Who is the best?
Pele or Maradona? Who is the best? Photo: Getty Images
An even bigger duel than the one between Leo Messi and CR7 for the currently best football player in the world is hard to imagine. But there is. The one about the best footballer of all time. The protagonists? Diego Maradona and Pele.

The two best players of all times can’t stand each other. One is Brazilian, the other Argentinean – that’s what makes for a natural footballing antipathy. But countless tips in interviews, criticism and even a pronounced dissent, especially when one is supposed to evaluate the other’s performance, have extremely promoted the hostility between the two.

For instance, before the election of the footballer of the century, both fought a verbal battle of the extra class. The newspapers and fans joined in after several mutual insults. The Brazilian Pele received an award and the Argentinian Maradona proved to be a bad loser.

He left the hall before his rival was honored, while Pele looked good for a bad game. Even today, the fans are still arguing about who was better. The more successful was the Brazilian.

27. Lewy vs Kuba - Center forward against Right wing (also political?)

Golden times in Dortmund: The Polish legends Kuba and Lewy... (Photo by Sascha Steinbach/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Golden times in Dortmund: The Polish legends Kuba and Lewy... (Photo by Sascha Steinbach/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Robert Lewandowski and Jakub Blaszczykowski not only played together at BVB but are still colleagues in the Polish national team. But next to the pitch they go their separate ways. And they have been for quite some time.

The reasons are manifold. Character, politics, district behavior, different success curves and probably also a pinch of envy play a role. Because one is on his way to becoming an absolute world star. And at the end of his career, the other moves more in the direction of a Bundesliga supplement player with a relegation candidate. But very important for the disturbed relationship. The two simply don’t like each other and are like dogs and cats. Kuba even made a mockery of Lewy on television in 2012. Robert Lewandowski is a supporter of the citizens’ platform “PO”. Meanwhile, his three-year older teammate is a supporter of the national conservative party “PiS” – “Law and Justice”. However, after this conflict of interest was extensively discussed in the Polish media, there was radio silence between Lewy and Kuba.

And privately, too, the two worlds are separated. Their characters could not be more different. Blaszczykowski never had a choreographed career plan like that of Lewandowski (Lech Posen, Dortmund, FC Bayern – Real Madrid?). Lewandowski is more ingenious, Blaszczykowski compensates much with fighting power and willpower. “It is no secret that we are not on the same wavelength. We have no contact, everyone goes his own way”, revealed the latter in his biography “Kuba”, surprisingly unvarnished.

In addition to personal and political differences, the sporting competition now also means that Poland’s best footballers are not approaching each other. Blaszczykowski was the face of the national selection for a long time, but more recently Lewandowski has become the leader. The fact that he officially became the new captain in December 2015 reinforced the trench. It’s about hierarchy as a vehicle for one’s own ego. It is about money, as a direct consequence of supremacy. But in spite of private differences, they are at least behaving professionally on the pitch and also put their foot down together for EURO 2016. And Poland also qualified for the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Even if the results were more than modest.

26. CR7 vs Lionel Messi – There can be only one!

CR7 and Leo Messi -Not necessarily quite best friends, but no enemies either. Photo: Getty Images
CR7 and Leo Messi -Not necessarily quite best friends, but no enemies either. Photo: Getty Images
It may come as no surprise to some that these two football players appear here. But we didn’t record them because there was a real hostility, but because the hostility between Lionel Messi and CR7 is probably just a media fake.

In many interviews, they both claimed several times that they didn’t hate each other, but respected each other as rivals. It is irrelevant whether there is still a little antipathy in the game. Both don’t like each other as much as they do. But it doesn’t have to be, because it’s an almost epic fight between the two. For titles, the biggest fan community, and most followers.

And now CR7 has also won a big title on the national team level. While Messi still can’t do a penalty kick and had resigned from time to time. But he shot Argentina for the 2018 World Cup and finally played like Barca in the decisive game against Ecuador. Obviously, it wasn’t the twin or cousin who played there but the Argentinian national team. During the World Cup, this twin brother was at the start again. The one who can’t do penalties.

So it stays with what CR7 once said: “Many think Messi is the best, but in my head I am”. The Messi fans will see it differently. The Maradona fans and the Pele fans will see it even more. The Lord’s fans can only smile about this hubris.


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These Soccer Players And Managers “Hate” Each Other

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