Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Liverpool have to expect change under Slot, says Zenden

SoccerNews in English Premier League 21 May 2024

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Former Liverpool midfielder Boudewijn Zenden admits there will be a change for the Reds under Arne Slot but says the club should be ready to buy into his philosophy.

Liverpool confirmed on Monday that Slot would take over from Jurgen Klopp, who managed his final game at Anfield against Wolves on Sunday.

The Dutchman had already announced that he would be taking the job in a press conference, with Klopp then leading a chant of Slot’s name in his farewell speech.

Slot has reportedly signed a three-year deal and will officially take charge from June 1.

Asked if the former Feyenoord manager can avoid a painful transition when he begins his new job, Zenden said Liverpool need to be prepared for any outcome.

“Well, let’s put it this way. Someone said life is like a box of chocolates, you know, you never know what you’re going to get until it’s there, and it’s the same with Slot,” he told Stats Perform.

“You know, there’s going to be a change. You never know what the change will be like. As I said, there will be a change, that’s for sure.

“For example, if you look at Arsenal, what I admire about the Arsenal people in charge is that the beginning of Arteta at Arsenal. I’m sure you remember well, it was painful for the fans, for the people that had the love for the Gunners.

“They stuck to Arteta, they stuck to his vision, his way of playing, and gradually the team that he built, with his philosophy and the players that he took in, that go with that philosophy.

“For me, it’s a huge pleasure to see that if you stick to someone, if you stick to the manager, and you’re convinced of his ideas, that you see where this will get you.

“There will be a change. Am I afraid? Well, of course, I’m not afraid, concerned, no, I think you have to just live with it.

“I’m sure in Liverpool, they’ll keep their head up high when they go through that storm if it’s there. But no, it’s going to be a change, of course, but when Slot takes over, I hope that it’ll go down well.”

Slot led Feyenoord to the Eredivisie title in 2023 and was named Eredivisie Manager of the Year on two occasions, while also winning the KNVB Beker this season.

While some have questioned if Slot will be able to deal with the big stars at the club, Zenden does not believe that will be a problem.

“Yeah, but listen, it is what it is. Of course, Feyenoord this is nowhere near the magnitude of Liverpool. Feyenoord is a big club, but Liverpool is a massive club. So, there’s certainly the expectations that come with the club,” he added.

“Also, when you are in a big club, there are big players with big egos and I think what could help Slot as well is that he used to play himself.

“He knows what’s happening in the mind of a player, he knows what happens in the dressing room. So, he knows a little bit about how these things can be done can work out how it works out, but it definitely will be interesting to see how he deals with these different situations.

“I think Jurgen Klopp over the years also had a few, I’m not going say run-ins, but of course, there’s been issues, but they’ve all been solved and taken care of, one or the other.”

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