As per reports coming in from all corners of England, not just the North West of it, former Mainz and Borussia Dortmund manager is set to be appointed Liverpool’s next manager. Journalists such as Ben Smith and Phil McNulty from the BBC had already told long before today that the Stuttgart-born maverick is in talks with the Merseyside club and a deal may be announced as early as the coming Friday. Although, the official announcement is still in the pipeline and rather imminent, there are certain reasons for as to why Jurgen Klopp would be the perfect candidate to take Liverpool forward.
Similar playing style of play
Both Brendan Rodgers and Jurgen Klopp belong to that modern host of managers who place immense belief in the high pressing system that utilizes winning the ball in areas close to the goal. Rodgers’ men, back in the 2013-14 season, were considered to be one of the most dangerous counter-attacking teams in the world and Jurgen Klopp’s Borussia Dortmund acquired a similar name tag, especially during the 2012-13 Champions League campaign.
The high intensity, high pressing and high-energy gameplay that the sides’ of both the managers have reflected over the years suggest that the Liverpool side is well accustomed to such an approach to the game and won’t find it tough to adapt to Klopp’s system. The verticality and directness that Klopp’s side had is visible in the Liverpool lineup, although some amount of work has to be done in the market.
But, the problem lies in some of the players that Liverpool currently have. They have to up their work rate and improve their work ethic if they have to survive Klopp’s imminent reign. It will be tough but slowly, they’ll get used to it.
Although, during his last season in charge at the Signal Iduna, Klopp became aware of the fact that the clubs had figured out their gegenpressing system and Dortmund lied at the bowels of the Bundesliga. It was then that Klopp realized that a compromise has to be made, and rightly so, that change would be visible here in the Premier League too.
Klopp knows how to start from scratch
Jurgen Klopp is a kind of a manager who knows how to build the foundations of a young team and work with them, to guide them and create a path for their greatness. He has earned rave reviews for his efforts at blossoming young talents at Borussia Dortmund, take the likes of Marco Reus, Mario Gotze, Robert Lewandowski or Ilkay Gundogan. He’s the manager who turned players like Gotze, Hummels, Durm, Kevin Grosskreutz and Weidenfeller into World Cup winners. Liverpool are in a similar situation right now. They have the players with a good amount of potential, they just need someone who can bring that potential out fully and nurture the talents of the youngsters in there, and this is something Brendan Rodgers couldn’t convincingly do.
Liverpool are undergoing a rough patch right now and they need a kind of manager who can take the club forward stepwise, if not in one go. Klopp did that almost enviably at Dortmund and went as far as coming close to winning the Champions League with them, let alone winning the Bundesliga consecutively. After Luis Suarez’s exit, Liverpool’s ship has hit a familiar transition period yet again. Dortmund were on the brink of bankruptcy in 2005 and came very close to exploring and plunging into relegation under Thomas Doll. And Jurgen Klopp is someone who knows how to get rid of these cruel transition periods and carry the club back towards the light at the end of the tunnel.
Child-like desire to win at all costs
Liverpool, as most would very well know are among the most historically prominent and well-known clubs in the whole wide world. There was a time when they had the players to propel the others into playing well, and instilling that win at all costs attitude into them such as Jamie Carragher and Steven Gerrard. Liverpool lack that kind of a player right now and the onus falls on the manager to encourage them and shout at them such that they perform for him and win games. Jurgen Klopp is exactly that kind of a manager.
The Telegraph’s Jonathan Liew writes:
For Klopp, on the other hand, honesty is almost a condition. It is a fearless honesty, an instinctive honesty; almost, in many ways, the honesty of a child. On some profound level, Klopp is still the child-manager who never quite grew up.There is a simple, crystalline certainty to the way he approaches football: loyal, optimistic, fiercely devout. It is no surprise at all to learn that he strongly believes in God.
What is clear from these lines is that Klopp is always filled to the brim with commitment with whatever he does and he can cross any limits to win games. His mentality on the pitch, which relates to letting everything out on players and making his feelings known about them is something that would help Liverpool in a lot of ways. And the desire to win games is required too.
Thanks to the never say die spirit his sides have a knack for exhibiting, Klopp’s men in yellow stripped Bayern Munich to every single domestic title, and came very close to denying them a Champions League title in 2013. That’s the kind of a manager that would do wonders for Liverpool- ambitious, hard working and in your face.
Similarity in club stature
When Jurgen Klopp took over from Thomas Doll in 2008, Borussia Dortmund had finished as low as 13th in the Bundesliga and he, as we are well aware of, took Die Borussen to far greater heights. They were what Dietmar Hamann dubs Liverpool as a ‘working class’ and had someone as a manager, who they could identify with and not think of him as someone who belongs to a higher class than him.
Much like the fans of the clubs, take Liverpool or Dortmund, Klopp is passionate about what he does and as Jonathan Liew says “He’s got fearless honesty” and that refers to the attitude he has towards the game he has grown up loving.
Both clubs are, in financial terms, quite similar and the-the hopes of expectations match just as perfectly. Both, thanks to the glorious history that they have, possess a set of fans who want silverware and trophies and won’t settle for anything less than that.
Liverpool and Borussia Dortmund are the kind of clubs any manager would love to manage. They are just as passionate about the game when to compared to the man who’s being brought in to bring smiles back on their faces.