Jurgen Klopp was a huge success at his last club Borussia Dortmund. He took them to two titles in the Bundesliga and into the Champions League final during his time as head coach. It will take time for him to get his message and methods across, but on first impressions he has already made great strides and so far looks to be a perfect match.
The 48-year-old German took control of his first match as the new Liverpool FC manager on Saturday against an in-form Tottenham Hotspur side. Even though he has only been in charge for a few days, there was a big change in the attitude and tactics of the team.
Klopp’s philosophy is one that demands a high intensity and pressing game. The first jobs he will need to sort out though is Liverpool’s leaky defense. During Rogers tenure, the team over a period of 122 Premier League games conceded a goal against at an average of 1.27. It was why many people put free bets on them not keeping a clean sheet. During Klopp’s time at Dortmund, they only conceded an average of 0.69 goals over 68 league matches. It is an area that the German manager has highlighted during his first interviews after taking the job.
One of the key components of Klopp’s tactics is the reorganisation of player positions when the ball is lost. The manager like his players to apply a different pressing style when the play is in various areas of the pitch and his defenders to hold a high defensive line. This style of play requires excellent awareness by his defenders that has lacked over the last few seasons.
The main characteristics that describe Klopp’s tactics are emotional, speed with quick transitions. To implement this style of play, it will need to be supported by the whole team. There are question marks if the currently defensive players will be able to carry out the type of play that he demands as manager.
Klopp has a talented bunch of players at his disposal, which he realises. He is an excellent motivator and manages to get the most out of the players. So far he has impressed everyone connected to Liverpool FC in an amazing introduction after he signed his three-year deal. It has led to lots of people putting free bets on the Reds to finish in the top four this season.
The big winners with Klopp signing as manager will be the squads dynamic players. With Gomez injured for the rest of the season, Alberto Moreno will be the first choice left back. He is the type of defender that will fit into the high-intensity style that the manager demands. When he was in charge of Dortmund, they were excellent at counterattacking with quick transition when the ball was won back in deep positions. Moreno has shown that he is an excellent ball carrier that can adapt to this methods easily.
Another winner could be Jordon Ibe. The likes of Coutinho, Lallana and Firmino can play wide but do not offer the direct style and touchline hugging that the young English man does. To match the high intensity, players that can get up and down the pitch all game will be the players that get the start under Klopp. That applies to the likes of James Milner and Jordan Henderson, who have excellent engines on them. One of the best free bets to make is that these two players will be key to Liverpool success over the season.
One of the main changes though will come in the mentality of the players. Klopp wants to see more bravery, running and fighting together along with more fun in their eyes. Under the management of Klopp, that should not be a problem.
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