As one of the best-supported clubs in Europe and a side boasting a strong global presence as well, Liverpool is currently going through a transitional period.
The 18-time England champions and five-time European champions with titles from both European Cup and the Champions League have long been trailing behind the most prominent clubs domestically – Manchester United, City and Chelsea – while they have also endured a difficult time from an international perspective.
Things changed dramatically, however, as of 2015 when charismatic German tactician Jurgen Klopp was introduced as a new manager. Having joined Liverpool off the back of a successful seven-year spell with Borussia Dortmund, Jurgen Klopp was backed to initiate a transformation process – a revolution if you like – in order to restore Liverpool’s former glory.
The Klopp Effect
Scarred by the previous regimes and their inability to push Liverpool back to prominence, the supporters were excited to welcome a man who’d previously become known for his high-octane, heavy-metal football in Germany.
His arrival made an immediate change to squad mentality and although some of his choices – like applauding the supporters after a relatively negative result – did raise plenty of eyebrows, the atmosphere around the club slowly started to change.
Acute lack of confidence Liverpool teams displayed for almost an entire decade prior to Jurgen Klopp’s arrival was instantly cured with an injection of infectious optimism Reds boss is radiating with and the general perception of perennial underachievers was starting to reshape – both from the fans and expects’ point of view.
Five years into their reign over Anfield, the much criticised Fenway Sports Group put their faith into the ever-smiling German genius Jurgen Klopp who invited fans, supporters, players and everyone connected with the club on a fantastic journey. Having been promised full backing, time and resources to rebuild at Anfield, Klopp is, today, making all those who love Liverpool burst with joy ahead of the new 2018/19 season.
Squad selection, reinforcement choices and overall transfer market policy have long been a subject of intense scrutiny at Liverpool during the past couple of years – and especially since Rafa Benitez left the club, initiating a disintegration of the Champions League winning side.
The Reds have come a great length from being a club that would break records for injury-prone players (Andy Carroll) and unproven stars unable to fit into style at Anfield (Christian Benteke) and being a place top-class footballers would steer away from to transform into one of the most desired places to be at the moment.
All thanks to Jurgen Klopp. And Fenway Sports Group holding his back.
The likes of Roberto Firmino, Mohamed Salah, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Naby Keita, Virgil Van Dijk, Fabinho and imminently AS Roma goalkeeper Alisson Becker are definite proof of a changed perception both from within and outside of the squad.
Philippe Coutinho’s departure brought back old feelings of disappointment but Liverpool cannot be called a selling club anymore. What Jurgen Klopp did was invest money accumulated through Coutinho sale to bring in several top players in crucial areas of the team and improve his roster significantly.
Liverpool have become a side on par with Europe’s biggest clubs and are throwing huge punches in the transfer market with most prominent players not turning a blind eye anymore and disregarding Liverpool’s interest.
The fact Keita rejected Bayern Munich’s interest, Van Dijk said no to Manchester City, Fabinho turned attention away from United and Alisson dished admiring glances from Real Madrid and Chelsea are now a testament to the true power of a man whose hands-on approach is bringing formidable results at Anfield.
With all of the firepower upfield, stronghold in the centre of the back and rock solid backline with a world-star name between the sticks, Liverpool have been installed as second favourites, behind Manchester City, with 9/2 betting odds to lift the Premier League title in 2018/19.
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