Jürgen Klopp has won the Best FIFA Men’s Coach award for 2019.The Liverpool boss received the accolade at a ceremony in Milan on Monday night in recognition of his achievements throughout the year.
Klopp, who saw off competition from Pep Guardiola and Mauricio Pochettino to land the prize, led the Reds to Champions League glory and a club-record total of 97 Premier League points in the 2018-19 season.
The recipient of the Best FIFA Men’s Coach title was determined by votes from national team captains, coaches, fans and journalists, with Klopp, Guardiola and Pochettino emerging as the three finalists from an initial 10-man shortlist.
“Wow, it’s quite heavy! What can I say? I have to say thank you to a lot of people obviously,” said Klopp upon collecting the award.
“I have to start at the beginning with my family sitting at home and probably watching. It’s great – nobody would have expected that I stand here 20 years ago, 10 years ago, five years ago, four years ago probably!
“And how close it can be; Mauricio, we won that game [the Champions League final] – that’s why I’m here and not you. That’s how football is, but we all know what an incredible job you did, what an incredible job Pep did, what so many coaches out there did.
“Coming back to saying thank you, I have to say thank you to my outstanding club, Liverpool FC – who doesn’t love it has no heart! That’s not true, you can love other clubs as well.
“To the owners, they gave me an incredible team, Mike Gordon in particular. And I have to thank my team because as a coach, you can only be as good as your team is. And the potential of your team is one, what they make of it is the other.
“So I’m really proud to be the manager of such an incredible bunch of players.
“I don’t want to make it longer than it should be but at the end I want to use this stage to say one thing: this today is an individual prize, I don’t understand 100 per cent individual prizes but I get it because I’m here for a lot of people.
“We are all on the really good side of life obviously, that’s why we are here; legends – the past was great, the present is really good and the future hopefully will be good for us as well.
“But there are people out there that have not exactly the same situation and I’m really proud and happy that I can announce from today on I’m a member of the Common Goal family.”
FULL LIST OF FIFA BEST 2019 AWARD WINNERS
Men’s player – Lionel Messi (Barcelona and Argentina)
Women’s player – Megan Rapinoe (Reign FC and United States)
Men’s coach – Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool)
Women’s coach – Jill Ellis (United States)
Men’s goalkeeper – Alisson Becker (Liverpool and Brazil)
Women’s goalkeeper – Sari Van Veenendaal (Atletico Madrid and Holland)
Puskas award – Daniel Zsori (Debrecen/Fehervar)
Fan award – Silvia Grecco (Palmeiras)
Fair play award – Marcelo Bielsa and the Leeds squad
FIFPro men’s world XI – Alisson; Matthijs De Ligt, Marcelo, Sergio Ramos, Virgil Van Dijk; Frenkie De Jong, Eden Hazard, Luka Modric; Cristiano Ronaldo, Kylian Mbappe, Lionel Messi
FIFPro women’s world XI – Sari Van Veenendaal; Lucy Bronze, Nilla Fischer, Kelley O’Hara, Wendie Renard; Julie Ertz, Amandine Henry, Rose Lavelle; Marta, Alex Morgan, Megan Rapinoe.