Only a month before Jurgen Klopp signed his contract extension in 2022, a move that would keep him at Liverpool until the summer of 2026, the German was indicating that he might not have the required energy levels to carry on in the Anfield hot seat beyond 2024.
Panic Stations as Klopp suggest the end may be nigh
These remarks would have, undoubtedly, come as a shock to the club’s hierarchy who immediately made it their priority to sit down with Klopp in order to find out how they could better support him. Evidently, it was a productive meeting and just a month later, Klopp had found a new lease of life, which is why he put pen to paper on another four years at Anfield.
It was a staggering turnaround and it’s hard to know exactly what caused the drastic change in Klopp’s position. In many respects, it no longer matters as all parties seemingly got what they wanted out of the discussions that took place in April 2022. With this being the case and the German committed to a long-term future with the club, Klopp was then free to focus on the quadruple-chasing season which would ultimately end with the Reds winning the FA Cup and Carabao Cup.
The worst times were still to come
The irony is that almost a year on from those heady days of hunting down four trophies, Klopp, more than ever, has a reason to feel completely drained as the Reds had lost for a seventh time when Wolves beat them in early February – five times more than they did throughout the entire 2021/2022 season when they finished a point behind Manchester City.
"I am responsible for all this! If you want to criticise, criticise me!"
Jurgen Klopp explains why Liverpool are struggling this season 🔴 pic.twitter.com/tE3KPa6jBZ
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) February 11, 2023
In addition to the uncharacteristic league form this season, Klopp’s charges were also dumped out of both cups they won last year before either competition really got going. In short, nothing has gone to plan for the German, with the manager even suffering the indignity of being shunned by soccer’s next star, Kylian Mbappe, who rejected a move to Liverpool owing to the club’s trajectory trending in the wrong direction. Mbappe’s rejection was undoubtedly another hammer blow during a time when the spending of other top Premier League clubs set a new transfer record.
Taking into account all the setbacks that Klopp has faced and after hinting at running out of steam when the Reds were arguably the continent’s best team last season, one couldn’t help but wonder about the toll that the last few months would have taken on Klopp and the potential consequences that may come with it. In particular, with the latest football betting odds in the outright winner market pricing Liverpool, as of the 22nd of February, at +25000 to win the Premier League, there is reason to believe that now would be a good time for Klopp to walk away with his legacy unraveling at the seams. Put another way, it is unheard of for Liverpool to be so far off the pace at this stage of the season and it may be wise for Klopp to jump as opposed to being pushed.
Liverpool’s failures inspire Klopp to work harder
The reality, however, is that this adversity has made Klopp even more determined to succeed at Anfield, which is probably why the manager is such a formidable soccer coach. In fact, it was his rallying cry before the recent Merseyside derby win in February that may well be looked back on in years to come as the moment that Klopp’s Liverpool reign entered its barnstorming second act.
Speaking to the media, the 55-year-old said: “These are the difficult times and I don’t enjoy it, but if you can show in this time that especially this club is so special because we believe in anything. If people believe in me, then we can go through this together because when we come out, we will have great times again.”’
Jurgen Klopp believes he will have great times again at Liverpool 🤜 pic.twitter.com/UBdW1LLB9D
— ESPN UK (@ESPNUK) February 13, 2023
Encouragingly for Liverpool fans, there is nothing at all ambiguous about Klopp’s intentions, and in a strange way, perhaps a season like this was needed in order to recapture his passion that will in turn help propel the Reds back to their past triumphs.
Indeed, this is far from the end of Klopp’s time as Liverpool’s manager and after witnessing a version of his side that is virtually unrecognizable, and having endured the unfamiliar experience of fighting for his job in recent times, the German has seemingly never been more invigorated in his quest to win silverware for the Reds.
Looking forward, the 2023/2024 season has the potential to see Klopp’s fabled ‘mentality monsters’ return to their ruthless best after some turbulent times. Yes, there is life yet in one of the Premier League’s most successful managers.