KLOPP FOR THE KOP
As Liverpool put the Brendan Rodgers era behind them and move on to new management, several names started appearing in reports about who may take charge of our squad next but one name kept coming up more often than others. Jürgen Klopp.
Though word of possibly Diego Simeone and Carlo Ancelotti and a couple of other outside chances in contention spread around the media, Klopp was always considered to be the preferred choice by the owners and the club itself. Many fans were excited just to be having someone else take over and for us to have the chance at making a fresh start leading to a more successful future, but Klopp really seemed to be the best choice for fans and club alike.
Klopp has a successful managerial record, but popularity is important too.
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A manager like Jose Mourinho would never be a popular choice for our club to long time Liverpool fans, we’ve known him as our rivals (Chelsea) manager for far too long and could never really accept him, even if his management record is of a high standard. Nobody can deny that he brings good results to the club he’s managing, but that’s not the problem. He knows how to win games, but he’d still be outcast and disliked for his previous club involvement. It’s the same with players, too. Many clubs won’t sign players from their biggest rivals because fans just won’t want them there, no matter how good they are. A rival just will not ever be welcome at the new club by fans and you cannot ignore the wishes of your fans.
Plus, he’s said and done more than a few silly things over the years that made him look like an idiot. Some people just can’t stand him. It’s hard to get behind someone and support them if they’re just simply a very annoying person.
With that said, I’m sure you can understand how important it is that fans will like their manager and that he becomes popular and I believe Jürgen Klopp fulfils that criteria. Jürgen has even been to Liverpool before with Dortmund. The two teams had played a friendly with us in August of 2014 previously and the Reds fans gave a warm welcome to the German club and manager.
I have no doubt that he will be popular from the moment he arrives in Merseyside and even more so if he does what he does best… which is bringing great success to the club he’s managing. Having done so with Borussia Dortmund, I am confident he can do this for Liverpool.
The history between Klopp’s previous club and his new club goes back a long way, fans. As I mentioned briefly, Klopp and Borussia Dortmund played a fixture at Anfield which we were victorious in (with goals from Sturridge, Lovren, Coutinho and Henderson for a 4-0 win), which most of even our younger fans would remember. However we’ve had another fixture against this side before and our youngest generations of fans may not know about this…
There was also “THE ONE WE DIDN’T WIN”.
Way before the Klopp era, Liverpool played Borussia Dortmund at Hampden Park (that’s not England or Germany, it’s actually in Scotland) in an important European fixture back in the ’60s.
The 1966 European Cup Winners Cup. The result ended up in our opponents favour as 2-1 eventually but the game had to go to extra time before Dortmund got their second goal and won the cup.
I have information from a reliable source who was actually watching the game live back in ’66 that it was rather unlucky we did not win this game. They had scored first but then Roger Hunt had provided our goal, which was the equaliser Liverpool needed to keep on going after 90 minutes. It could have easily reached a penalty shootout, but a free kick was given to Dortmund in extra time.
After having controversially moved the ball further up the pitch from where the foul had been made and taking the free kick very quickly so the referee wouldn’t notice or have time to restart the game (and play did continue without interruption), Dortmund made their way towards our penalty area and Tommy Lawrence, our goalkeeper. As he rushed out to challenge the attacker (Reinhard Libuda) for the ball, it was lobbed over him and although the ball struck the crossbar of the goal, it had deflected back, hit our captain Ron Yeats who had been rushing back to defend and rebounded into the goal off our own player. Very unlucky, but that’s how the Germans won the cup against one of the strongest Liverpool sides in our history.
BUT we can’t really blame Klopp for that. He wasn’t managing them back in 1966, so maybe we’ll forget that Borussia Dortmund stole the cup from us and just give Jürgen a nice warm welcome when he arrives in Liverpool. Talks between him and the club are already at “advanced stages” and though there were other contenders for the job available it’s highly unlikely that anybody else will be given the role. Some betting websites and bookmakers have already stopped taking bets on whether it will be Klopp and that’s a sure sign that we’ve got him and he’s got us now.
It’s so certain that he has the position now that information about his contract has been leaked from sources at the club already – he’s due to be our manager for the next three years, earning £3.5M per year. Not a bad salary, right? Well, I think we can be confident he’s worth it.
Apparently Jürgen’s bringing some of his own personal staff with him, assistants that have been with him for years during his many successes. For the immediate future, Gary McAllister and other staff that Rodgers had at his disposal are staying at our club until their contracts end, though Klopp may have no use for some of them.
Official press statements from the club about the new manager are due to be made on Friday (in England). By the time we get ready to play our next fixture in around 10 days time, Klopp should already have the team sheet in his hands and be choosing the lineup for our first away game in a while, Tottenham Hotspurs at White Hart Lane.
Until then, keep walking on with hope in your hearts, Anfield Family! YOU’LL NEVER WALK ALONE.
[written by] Stuart Drewery.
I’m an Englishman (born and raised in Liverpool in the 80s). My whole family including my parents and grandparents were Liverpool fans so I was born into being a red.
I’ve seen Liverpool win the league (about 25 years ago) and I’ve been 100% loyal and committed while supporting the Reds through all the good times AND the bad times since the 80s.