Manchester United’s match with Derby County tomorrow night will pitch Ole Gunnar Solskjaer up against Phillip Cocu in the dugout.
The Dutchman was a surprise appointment by the Rams and he has had a mixed time of it. Derby sit in 13th place, eight points off the play-off places.
Cocu has had a couple of fleeting crossovers with United before, both as manager and a player.
Cocu vs United as a manager
Previously Cocu took on United as PSV Eindhoven boss in the Champions League in 2015/16.
The first game ended 2-1 to Cocu’s PSV and was marred by a brutal late tackle on Luke Shaw by defender Hector Moreno.
BBC Sport reported how a day later Cocu had been to visit Shaw in hospital.
It was a classy gesture from the manager, visiting the United defender at his lowest point when he had no obligation to do so.
The second meeting against his former boss Louis van Gaal saw him frustrate United at Old Trafford in a 0-0 draw.
Cocu had earlier helped set Memphis Depay on his path to Old Trafford by managing him with great success in the Eredivisie and winning the 2014/15 title.
As a player
Cocu signed with Barcelona in 1998 and was part of the side which enjoyed two titanic battles with Manchester United in the treble season.
Meeting in the Champions League group stages, Cocu played all 90 minutes of the epic 3-3 draw at Old Trafford.
Solskjaer was also a starter, coming close to scoring when he hit the woodwork.
He missed the second game with an injury, while Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was an unused substitute.
Notably in three meetings as player and manager against United, Cocu is undefeated. Let’s see if we can end that trend tomorrow night.
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