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Friday, June 21, 2024

Jurgen Klopp to leave Liverpool at end of season

Jurgen Klopp will leave Liverpool at the end of the season.

Klopp, 56, made his announcement in a video on Liverpool’s social media channels on Friday morning. In an interview with club media, he says he told the club of his decision in November.

“I will not manage a club or a country at least for a year, that’s not possible, I cannot do that and I don’t want to,” Klopp added.

The German head coach joined Liverpool in 2015 and has won the Premier League, Champions League, FA Cup and League Cup with the Merseyside club. He last signed a contract extension at Liverpool in 2022 and his deal was due to run until June 2026.

“I can understand that it’s a shock for a lot of people in this moment, when you hear it for the first time, but obviously I can explain it – or at least try to explain it,” Klopp said.

“I love absolutely everything about this club, I love everything about the city, I love everything about our supporters, I love the team, I love the staff. I love everything. But that I still take this decision shows you that I am convinced it is the one I have to take.

“It is that I am, how can I say it, running out of energy. I have no problem now, obviously, I knew it already for longer that I will have to announce it at one point, but I am absolutely fine now. I know that I cannot do the job again and again and again and again.

“After the years we had together and after all the time we spent together and after all the things we went through together, the respect grew for you, the love grew for you and the least I owe you is the truth – and that is the truth.”

Klopp’s assistant managers Pepijn Lijnders and Peter Krawietz, as well as elite development coach Vitor Matos, will also leave at the end of the season. Liverpool said in a statement that Lijnders is “keen to pursue his own career in management”.

“I told the club already in November,” Klopp said. “I have to explain a little bit that maybe the job I do people see from the outside, I’m on the touchline and in training sessions and stuff like this, but the majority of all the things happen around these kind of things. That means a season starts and you plan pretty much the next season already.

“When we sat there together talking about potential signings, the next summer camp and can we go wherever the thought came up, ‘I am not sure I am here then anymore’ and I was surprised myself by that.”

Klopp was appointed to replace Brendan Rogers in October 2015. Liverpool finished the 2015-16 in eighth place in the Premier League, losing 3-1 to Sevilla in the Europa League final.

Klopp then guided Liverpool to back-to-back fourth-placed finishes, reaching the Champions League final in 2017-18 only to be defeated by Real Madrid. The following campaign saw Liverpool finish second in the Premier League and go one better in the Champions League, beating Tottenham Hotspur 2-0.

Liverpool then won their first-ever Premier League title in the 2019-20 season — their first league win since the 1989-90 First Division.

Klopp coached Borussia Dortmund from 2008-2015, where he won consecutive Bundesliga titles in the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons. His Dortmund side also reached the Champions League final the following year, where they lost to rivals Bayern Munich.

‘It probably inspires players to give him a great send-off’

Analysis from Premier League legend and The Athletic columnist Alan Shearer

It is very surprising, absolutely. No one was expecting it. It’s done in the right and professional way. Liverpool fans and their football club deserve that, without it getting out.

It probably inspires the players to give him a great send-off between now and the end of the season. They’re still in all of their competitions — they could give him a great send-off.

Big news and a big, big surprise.

(Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

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