As players and coaches, the Clásico bosses have met five times over the years and until now the Italian has had the upper hand
Carlo Ancelotti and Ronald Koeman have been part of the football world for four decades. The Italian made his playing debut for at Parma in 1976, while the Dutchman did so for Groningen in 1980. They only faced each other once as players, but have met again four times as managers.
One meeting as players
They clashed on the pitch on 21 February 1990, in a friendly between Holland and Italy in Rotterdam that ended 0-0. Although Ancelotti was at big teams like AS Roma and AC Milan, and Koeman was at Barça for six seasons as well as all of Holland’s ‘big three’, and at international level they coincided at Euro 88 and the Italia 90 World Cup, they never faced each other competitively.
Ronald Koeman, when he was a Barça player
Four more as managers
Ancelotti went into management in 1995, and Koeman in 2000, and they have crossed paths four times in their new roles, all in the same year of 2003, with the former in charge of AC Milan and the latter at Ajax:
2002/03 Champions League quarter finals Ajax 0-0 AC Milan AC Milan 3-2 Ajax
2003/04 Champions League group stage AC Milan 1-0 Ajax Ajax 0-1 AC Milan
The upshot is that Koeman is still looking for his first victory against Ancelotti. Hopefully this Sunday’s Clásico will be the day that it happens.