I wouldn’t go as far as to call it the elephant in the room. Instead, I’ll call it the ticking timebomb that is the remaining three years of Jurgen Klopp’s contract. It is something that has been playing around in my mind recently.
When the big man signed a two-year extension to take his deal up to summer 2026, it was like all our Christmases had come at once. In truth, it was a bonus I wasn’t sure I was expecting.
Jurgen and the Seven-Year Itch
Klopp did seven years at both of his German managerial stops, Mainz and Borussia Dortmund. In my head, I always felt that was roughly how it was going to go at Anfield. The thought of him giving more than a decade of his career to our club feels like a blessing. It is something that should never be taken for granted.
I would love to be wrong about this. But my horrible instinct tells me the aforementioned extension from back in April 2022 was the final one.
Three years feels like a long time but when you look at Liverpool, three years backward feels like five minutes ago. Van Dijk’s injury in the Merseyside Derby was roughly that far back. The wild 7-2 defeat at Villa Park (although it “doesn’t count” because nobody was there to see it) was in that same timeframe as well.
That long from now, we face the prospect of another man in the dugout. In that short period into the future, we could have another man facing up to the cameras in post-match interviews.
Written In The Stars
When you have had the pleasure of Jurgen Klopp and everything that has come with his reign, one must accept that nobody is going to come along and be as perfect for us as he has been.
The stars aligned the day the German walked through the door. He arrived in a manner that hasn’t been seen since Bill Shankly. He was the ideal man for us and we, despite our many structural flaws at the time, were the right club for him. You can’t replace THAT. However, somebody does need to step into his shoes in 2026 or (hopefully) further down the line.
Lining Up Replacements
As someone with more than a soft spot for Celtic, I have watched the progress of Ange Postecoglou with great interest. As far as characters go, he feels like the most natural fit. Nevertheless, after his brilliant start at Spurs, prying him away from Tottenham may pose its own problems. But in terms of “getting it,” he is the only person I can envisage maintaining the connection with the supporters to anywhere close to the same degree as Jurgen Klopp.
I have the list of favorites in front of me as I write this. While I’d sooner take another 20 years of Jurgen than see another face on the sidelines, a few names are intriguing.
Brighton’s Roberto De Zerbi looks to be on the sort of career trajectory that could place him in good standing should the vacancy present itself. Xabi Alonso is currently streets ahead of Steven Gerrard at Bayer Leverkusen for those with an eye for sentiment.
As far as the bookmakers are concerned, assistant Pep Ljinders would provide the most stability as far as backroom continuity is concerned. But if he gets the nod it might upset those who, for some reason, took exception to him writing a book.
Shooing The Cloud Away
Apologies for the somewhat gloomy ramblings. I didn’t want to bring despair to the overwhelming sense of positivity we’re all enjoying currently. But I think a part of me wanted to get those somewhat intrusive thoughts off my chest.
When the time does come, we ought to be grateful that it ever happened as much as we accept the sadness that will come with it. Nobody can replicate the impact Jurgen Klopp has made and we should never expect otherwise. But if he is regarded as this generation’s Shankly then maybe his successor could be our next Paisley.
That would be nice, wouldn’t it?