Saturday’s Manchester derby is the first meeting of Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho on English shores but the history between Europe’s two top coaches stretches back across 16 matches, seven years and five clubs.
In press-conference warfare, touchline rows and on-the-pitch celebrations, the pair have become the best of enemies in some of European football’s biggest fixtures.
This weekend welcomes the latest instalment of the Guardiola-Mourinho rivalry on a new stage. Here, lets look back at how it has played out in the past…….
Guardiola’s European champions dominated at the San Siro but could not find a way around Mourinho’s staunch defensive unit in a first battle between these two very different managers.
Barcelona were much more fluid than their hosts though Lionel Messi and Co frequently found their play disrupted and had to settle for a draw.
First blood in the Guardiola-Mourinho rivalry went to the Spaniard with Gerard Pique and Pedro grabbing the goals at the Nou Camp.
The Special One conceded that ‘Barca were spectacular’ having been taunted by the home crowd and after watching his team being pulled apart he vowed to find a way to emerge victorious if they were to meet again in the knock-out stages.
Inter Milan 3-1 Barcelona — Champions League, April 20, 2010
Inter and Barcelona were reunited in the Champions League semi-finals after this time it was a Mourinho masterclass that downed the European champions for his first win over Guardiola.
Wesley Sneijder, Maicon and Diego Milito got the goals in a tactically-perfect performance that saw the Inter boss say: ‘We have beaten the best team in the world.’
Barcelona 1-0 Inter Milan — Champions League, April 28, 2010
If the previous meetings had been, at worst, a complex collision of two tactical outlooks, this game — sealing a two-leg Inter triumph — was where things turned ugly.
Inter had Thiago Motta sent off after just 26 minutes but clung on with a brilliant defensive display and, having reportedly rowed with Barcelona staff in the tunnel at half-time, Mourinho celebrated on the pitch wildly at the final whistle.
Barcelona 5-0 Real Madrid — La Liga, November 29, 2010
Mourinho might have emerged the victor from his previous meetings with Guardiola but on arriving in Spain he, and his new team, were put firmly in their place in his first Clasico.
The Catalans were breathtaking in their control and Messi ran the show to send the Portuguese manager to his heaviest defeat while Cristiano Ronaldo barely got a kick. Guardiola said: ‘I’m proud the whole world has seen how we play football.’
Real Madrid 1-1 Barcelona — La Liga, April 16, 2011
The first of four meetings in 17 days for the two rivals, two penalties cancelled each other out as Mourinho’s men got a foothold following their embarrassment in the previous defeat.
A game that never really got going was regularly stopped by cynical challenges and gamesmanship and Raul Albiol was sent off for the challenge for Barca’s spot-kick.
Barcelona 0-1 Real Madrid — Copa del Rey, April 20, 2011
Ronaldo crashed home a 103rd-minute winner, heading home Angel Di Maria’s deep cross before the Argentine was later sent off.
Mourinho, it appeared, had finally found a way for his Real side to counter Guardiola’s monopoly over possession and in doing so claimed his first silverware in Spain.
Guardiola would go on to criticise the assistant referee for his role in ruling out a goal from Pedro, comments that Mourinho picked up and fired back at to incense his opposite number.
‘In the press room he is ‘el p*** jefe’ (the f***ing boss) and the one who knows more than everyone else,’ Guardiola said of Mourinho.
Real Madrid 0-2 Barcelona — Champions League, April 27, 2011
Mourinho and centre back Pepe were sent off in a bad-tempered first leg decided by two late goals from Messi.
It was a fifth consecutive dismissal for a Mourinho player against Barcelona and he was not best impressed, saying: ‘One day, I would like Josep Guardiola to win this competition properly.’
His comments refereed to Barcelona’s previous 2009 triumph when they won in the semi-finals at Chelsea in controversial circumstances. ‘I would be ashamed to have won it with the scandal of Stamford Bridge,’ Mourinho added. In his eyes Guardiola is yet to win Europe’s top competition fairly.
Barcelona 1-1 Real Madrid — Champions League, May 3, 2011
Mourinho served a touchline ban as the two rivals simply went through the motions in the second leg of their all-but-decided semi-final.
Guardiola called the evening ‘one of the most beautiful nights I have ever lived’, perhaps facilitated by not having to deal with the Real Madrid manager alongside him.
Real Madrid 2-2 Barcelona — Spanish Super Cup, August 14, 2011
A second season of Spain-based clashes between the managers came in the Spanish Super Cup and the first leg provided a thriller without the usual bad-tempered battling.
Mesut Ozil and Xabi Alonso got the goals for the hosts while David Villa and Messi responded for the visitors.
Barcelona 3-2 Real Madrid — Spanish Super Cup, August 17, 2011
A Barcelona victory in the supposedly-friendly Super Cup second leg was marred by one of the ugliest touchline brawls seen in recent years.
Mourinho poked Tito Vilanova, then Guardiola’s assistant, in the eye during a melee. He later said: ‘We intended to play like men and not fall on the ground at the slightest touch.’
A furious Pique said afterwards: ‘Someone has to take action on the matter. Mourinho is destroying Spanish football.’
Real Madrid 1-3 Barcelona — La Liga, December 10, 2011
Guardiola’s side bounced back from going a goal down after just 22 seconds to sweep Real aside and move top of La Liga as Mourinho’s men continued to struggle to overcome their Clasico rivals.
Goals from Alexis Sanchez and Cesc Fabregas, plus a Marcelo own goal, sealed the victory after Karim Benzene’s early strike.
Real Madrid 1-2 Barcelona — Copa del Rey, January 18, 2012
The Spanish Cup pitted Mourinho and Guardiola together at the two-legged semi-final stage and Barcelona claimed their second Bernabeu win of the season.
Carlos Puyol and Eric Abidal got the goals to bring Barca back from behind again as The Special One shuffled his pack but again found himself on the losing side.
Barcelona 2-2 Real Madrid — Copa del Rey, January 25, 2012
Barcelona fans ran a mock advert reading: ‘Wanted: a worthy rival for a decent Clasico. Ask here for details’, and sung: ‘Mourinho, stay’, as his team again fell at the hands of Guardiola’s Barca.
Real pulled back from two goals down to bring the tie to within a goal of their grasp but failed to claim victory and Sergio Ramos was sent off.
Barcelona 1-2 Real Madrid — La Liga, April 21, 2012
After so many struggles against Guardiola’s all-conquering team, Mourinho finally claimed his most-significant win over Barca since his Inter side ousted them in the Champions League semi-final of 2010.
It was Barcelona’s first home defeat in 55 games and a first Clasico win for Real in five years to put them right on track for the title. They sealed that and the Barca boss quit — Mourinho had outlasted Guardiola.
Bayern Munich 2-2 Chelsea (5-4 on penalties) — UEFA Super Cup, August 30, 2013
Having taken over their respective new teams that summer, Guardiola’s Bayern and the Chelsea of Mourinho’s second spell at Stamford Bridge met for UEFA’s ceremonial match in Prague.
A usually-drag fixture was high in intensity and furiously competitive and it looked like one Mourinho would win until Bayern equalised late after Ramires had been sent off for a lunge on Franck Ribery.
The now-United boss was unimpressed, saying: ‘Those who feel, who live for football, we have a very important rule: passion If you’re in love, you do not kill a final with a second card.’