Tuesday, December 6, 2016

From Dortmund to Liverpool what Anfield can expect from Klopp

October 13, 2015 by  
Filed under Specials

He’s been in the post less than a month, and already Jürgen Klopp has the whole of Merseyside eating out of the palm of his hand.

And who can blame them?

With the Premier League obsessed with the cult of personality, the arrival of Klopp is a stellar signing for the division.

As usual, his reputation precedes him, and the hype train will follow him wherever he goes, for the first few months in charge, at least.

The intensity of the media’s glare will require adaptation for Klopp himself – but it is Liverpool as a club that will be undergoing the biggest changes, at the German boss’s behest.

Here, Lee Price, who went behind the scenes at Klopp’s Dortmund during his reign, reveals what Anfield can expect from their new leader.

The excitement amongst the press has been palpable, and the Liverpool dressing room should share that feeling of optimism.

If predecessor Brendan Rodgers’s rapport with his players could be forced, Klopp will have no such struggles when dealing with his squad.

As his inaugural press conference demonstrated, he offers a mean charm offensive.

Behind closed doors, he is a man’s man who demands your respect.

A proven winner – whose pedigree includes guiding Dortmund to a Champions League final – players will hang on every carefully chosen word.

That’s something Rodgers could never bring to the party.

Similarly, there’ll be no chopping and changing from Klopp – unlike his predecessor, he knows exactly how he wants his team to play.

On the pitch, he requires high levels of work ethic, and prefers an up and at ‘em style of play that fits the frenzy of the Premier League perfectly.

Unlike Rodgers – and the likes of Van Gaal and Wenger – Klopp is less concerned about dominating possession.

That’ll be music to the ears of the Anfield faithful, who found themselves regularly frustrated at the sideways passing of their team.

His ‘gegenpressing’ tactics have been well documented and that approach, by its very nature, will ensure plenty of entertainment.

Klopp is box office, and his Liverpool side, if they embrace his techniques, will produce performances befitting of that.

In his own words, if Arsene Wenger conducts an orchestra at Arsenal, Klopp’s preference is for ‘heavy metal’.

Something else high on the list of easy ways to appease his new supporter base will be to blood local talent – something Klopp’s presence at the Under 18 side’s match over the weekend was testament to.

The big favourite on Merseyside is midfielder Jordan Rossiter, 18, who made his Premier League debut in August.

Expect him to be looked at closely. If Klopp believes he’s good enough for the first team, he’ll play.

He may look to move youth team training sessions to the senior side’s Melwood facility – currently, junior outfits train five miles away from the first team.

That is at odds with what Klopp was used to in Dortmund, where he reveled in creating a community feel, with all age groups training, eating, and generally living alongside one another.

There are few places in the UK, or clubs in the Premier League, that will embrace Klopp and what he’s about as well as Liverpool.

The comparison between the Reds and Klopp’s former club Dortmund has been made regularly, but Liverpool is colossally bigger.

And it is a stage that rock-star Klopp will relish.

Bundesliga Blueprint

* Lee’s book, The Bundesliga Blueprint, on the resurrection of German football, is available here:

http://t.co/f2sWo5a5iK

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