Zidane stops Simeone

Two of the best coaches of the 21st century meet again. The French is better off on the balance sheet: he has won four for two victories for the Argentine.

Two of the best coaches of the 21st century, face to face in a derby with a taste of a final for the League. Both, referents in their respective clubs and in charge of building two of the most winning projects in the history of Spanish football. Zidane has kept Madrid at the top for almost five years in which he has lifted 11 titles. Among them, three Champions, two Club World Cups and two Leagues. Win a cup every 22 games. For his part, Simeone reached an Atleti in depression in 2011 and has returned him to the elite of European football. He has given the rojiblanco team 7 titles, including a League after 18 years without winning it and two Europa League. In addition, it has led him to two of the three Champions League finals that he has played in his 117-year history.They have reaped their triumphs with two different styles, but with common points. Simeone bases his game on defensive consistency and this is shown by his numbers: his team only concedes 0.7 goals per game. Zidane, from the Italian school due to his past as second to Ancelotti, also relies a lot on a fierce defense (he receives 1.3 points per game), but tries to be more protagonist with the ball. His Madrid scores 2.3 goals per game, a figure that has worsened in the last two seasons but is still better than that of his neighbor (1.6) .

They changed the trend The arrival of Simeone was a before and after in the Madrid derbies. The Argentine found the formula to surpass the whites after 13 years without doing so. Winning the Copa del Rey at the Santiago Bernabéu in 2013 changed the negative trend. The maximum duel of the capital was equalized. Even the colchoneros managed to chain seven games in a row against Madrid without losing, four of them ended with victory. Among them, a very painful 4-0 for the Madrid parish.

However, the balance tipped again to the other side of the city with the arrival on the bench of Zinedine Zidane. In the clash of styles between the French and the Argentine, the former has come out winning. They have met 12 times and only two have Simeone been victorious. The first was in the League, in 2016 and at the Santiago Bernabéu. It was the first duel between the two. The second and last, in 2017, in the Champions League semi-final round. The rest of the clashes are counted by four wins for Madrid and six draws.

Zidane, hunting for MuñozZidane is looking for his third league title. He has always recognized that it is the most difficult competition and the one that generates the most satisfaction. The Frenchman is aware that a defeat against Atleti would leave him with few options to lift what would be his 12th title in the entity. If he succeeds, he would be two behind Miguel Muñoz (14) as the coach with the most cups in the club's history. In addition, he would become the fourth coach capable of winning the top local tournament three times, equaling Molowny and Benhakker and only behind the aforementioned Muñoz (9) .

It will be one of his toughest games in the Metropolitan, where he has always reaped good results. This time, he will not be able to count on some of the most important players in the squad, such as Ramos, Carvajal or Hazard. In addition, it has a fundamental piece like Benzema among cottons. The question is in the system: whether to maintain the usual 4-3-3 or to give Isco in the middle to give more control to his team.Simeone can make history For Simeone this derby is even more special. Cholo has 308 victories in official matches with the rojiblanco team and is tied with another club legend, Luis Aragonés. If Atlético defeats its eternal rival, the Argentine coach will have overtaken the 'Sabio de Hortaleza' and will be the coach with the most wins in the history of the entity.In addition, if Atlético take the derby, the title would have a clear rojiblanco sign. And the Cholo would also enter the history of the entity. He has a league as a coach and could take the second, something that only two coaches at Atlético have achieved, two myths: Ricardo Zamora and Helenio Herrera. El Cholo, by the way, is the one who has won the most trophies at the Madrid club: seven. Luis Aragonés conquered six.

Simeone has the thorn in the back of not having beaten Real Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano. It lacks that icing. To defeat him now there is a lot of work ahead. El Cholo took his players to the Atletico stadium yesterday, where he 'shielded' them before the derby. The coach hides his cards and remains in doubt as to whether João Félix will start or Saúl will play. It could even give entry to Lemar.

Photos from as.com
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