ER has had a rough time this season but it amazes me how some people have questioned if Jurgen Klopp is a great manager.
You don’t win the title and the Champions League unless you’re something special. And he did that and much more at Liverpool.
But all it took was a few dodgy results in the early months of the season, and he had them all on his case.
Perhaps that incredible second half as they won 7-1 at Rangers on Wednesday will silence some of them.
But since football is what it is these days, I guess not.
There’s no doubt Liverpool have strayed from that this season and whatever they did at Ibrox I think the league is already on them.
Winning the Champions League was a step in the right direction, but there’s a bit of light at the end of the tunnel and nothing more.
What Klopp had to do – and the signs are that he’s about to do it – is go beyond the usual job description.
He had to be a psychologist, a father figure, and almost an advisor to lift his players.
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Whoever the player is, regardless of reputation, confidence plays such a big part. So he had to put himself in Mo Salah’s mind to tell Virgil van Dijk: “You are the best centre-back in the world.”
He had to give his players confidence and confidence back, talk to them every day, convince them how good they are – and how a few wins can change everything.
When you score seven goals, like in Scotland, it’s a real shot in the arm, no matter who you’re playing against.
But don’t think for a minute that he doesn’t still have a damn good job to do.
Liverpool are far from the pace and the task of hosting Manchester City today is worlds away from Ibrox midweek.
Something has been missing this season and I think the real fight for them is to finish in the top four, not win the title.
However, I have to admit that it was crazy to hear that some even hinted that his job might be in jeopardy. That was absolutely amazing.
When you win games everyone calls you a genius, but it only takes a few losses and you’re written off as garbage. Opinions change in the blink of an eye.
I always remember something the great Graham Taylor said: Your manager is never as good as you think—nor as bad.
Klopp has so much credit in the bank with everyone from the owners to the fans that he would never be in any danger.
They love him at Liverpool and although they’ve had a bad time, you’ll never hear anyone shout ‘you don’t know what you’re doing’ at him.
But then it’s such a lonely job being a manager.
They are there to pick up players and need good staff to do the same for you.
I’ve been in positions where the team struggles and it’s terrible.
You are paranoid, doubting yourself, questioning decisions.
You stop at the traffic light and wonder what the guy in the car next to you is thinking when he looks over. You go out to eat and you are convinced that you are being whispered about.
To be honest, this can all get a bit scary, and it’s no surprise when managers get a bit irritable. Especially when you’re asked if you’re worried about losing your job.
So it’s no wonder we didn’t see that big smile a lot, as there’s no escaping the fact that Liverpool have been quite shocking at times.
And although they took a step in the right direction, I can’t imagine any joy against Manchester City today.
They were the top two teams in Europe for a couple of years but this time Liverpool aren’t even the second best team in England.
So Klopp still has everything to do to turn things around… but he will.
Every great coach needs great players and he has them. They were just out of shape but it will come back, believe me.
In fact, I’ll say now that I think City will beat them today and Liverpool won’t finish in the top two, but I wish they win a trophy.
It could be the League Cup, possibly the FA Cup. Who knows, they might even become European champions again.
I wrote them off in league but would never do that in a one off game if Klopp let them fire again.
And the signs are that it won’t be long now. Just ask the rangers.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/6452344/liverpool-jurgen-klopp-man-city-harry-redknapp/ It’s absolutely ridiculous that Liverpool boss Klopp is being questioned… but they still won’t get a result at Man City