David Wagner, the Huddersfield great who is best friends with Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, will be looking to stun Manchester United in the Champion League tonight.
Wagner now manages Swiss champions Young Boys, who face United this evening in their Champions League Group F opener – live on talkSPORT 2.
He joined Young Boys in June 2021 and has got off to a decentstart, stating fourth in the Swiss top-flight.
More importantly, Wagner has helped guide Young Boys to the Champions League group stages.
They secured a place in the competition following their victory in the final qualifying stages in late August against Hungarian side Ferencvaros.
Now, Wagner will have to pull out all the stops to stifle United in the Champions League and compete in Group F alongside Villarreal and Atalanta.
Wagner and Klopp
You may remember Wagner from his playing career in Germany where he played for Mainz, Schalke, Darmstadt and TSG Weinheim up until 2004.
But he is probably best known for his managerial career with Huddersfield and his close relationship with Liverpool’s Klopp.
The two managers first met and played together in Germany for the then second division side Mainz from 1991.
The two have remained friends ever since and were often seen chatting and joking when they faced each other in the Premier League.
Wagner doesn’t remember his best man speech…
Wanger was best man for Klopp at his wedding but he doesn’t remember the occasion so well…
He told FourFourTwo: “We became friends more or less from that first meeting. We were able to communicate and we were on the same level. More or less right from the start we became roomies and spent every second around football.
“I’m not the best drinker – I need two beers and it’s enough. Klopp’s miles better at drinking alcohol than me!
“Yes, I was the best man [at Klopp’s 2005 wedding], but I’ve no idea what the speech was like because I drank too much alcohol!”
Wagner’s managerial career started with Borussia Dortmund II while Klopp was manager of the first team.
They both left Germany for England in 2015 with Wagner heading to Huddersfield and Klopp to Liverpool.
He managed to guide them to the most lucrative prize in world football, the Championship Play-Off Final in 2017.
His side secured promotion at Wembley beating Jaap Stam’s Reading 4-3 on penalties.
Klopp admitted he cried constantly after the final: “I was nervous like hell. And afterwards, Ulla (Klopp’s wife) sent him [Wagner] a video of me crying like a baby when it happened, the final penalty, as I could not stop.”
Wagner kept the Yorkshire club in the top-flight for the first season but in the 2018/19 campaign they finished rock bottom with just 16 points and only three wins.
Wagner departed by mutual consent in the middle of that season and was soon appointed Schalke’s boss.
After 18 straight losses, his time at the Bundesliga club ended after just over a year.
Wagner wasn’t seen on the touchline again until June this year for Young Boys despite being linked with the Championship’s West Brom.
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