The German coach’s predecessor at Mainz claims that a Premier League job at Old Trafford, rather than Anfield, once held a greater appeal
Jurgen Klopp used to dream of managing of Manchester United before an opportunity at Liverpool presented itself, claims Eckhard Krautzun.
The German tactician arrived at Anfield in October 2015 in the wake of Brendan Rodgers’ dismissal, with his appointment widely heralded following a successful spell at Borussia Dortmund.
It has, however, been revealed by Krautzun – Klopp’s predecessor in a previous post at Mainz – that the 50-year-old once harboured ambitions of taking the reins at Old Trafford, rather than Anfield.
He told TheSetPieces on the Premier League aspirations of a man considered to be one of the finest bosses in the business: “It would be his dream to go to England one day and his favourite club would be [Manchester] United. That’s what he said.”
Krautzun also admits to having discussed the subject with Sir Alex Ferguson following the legendary Scot’s decision to step out of the United dugout and into a directorial role.
He added: “I said, ‘Jurgen Klopp, if he goes abroad, if he goes to England, his love would be Manchester United’.”
Ferguson was said to be an admirer of Klopp’s work at Dortmund, but he ultimately ended up at United’s arch-rivals as an opportunity on Merseyside presented itself before one in Manchester.
“After three or four months not working, I knew that he wanted to be in action again…when the offer came from Liverpool [that October], I knew he would not hesitate because he wanted to get into a top club in England,” said Krautzun.
Klopp is enduring something of a tough time at present, as his methods at Liverpool are called into question for the first time, but Krautzun believes that the role remains an ideal one for him.
He added: “The emotions in the stadium in Liverpool and the enthusiasm of the fans, the temperament there – that fits Klopp.
“I was not surprised that the spectators liked him right away. His emotions, the way he coaches the team, the way he jumps around, the way he shows his desire to win, that fits the club.
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“The fans are little more different to Man Utd. Man Utd is more quiet, the fans love their team too but there is more emotion and more passion I think in Liverpool. And Kloppo I think is a passionate, very temperamental man. That club fits him.”
Klopp’s passion is likely to be on full display this Saturday when Liverpool welcome United to Anfield.
The Reds head into that encounter on the back of a testing run which has delivered just one win from their last seven outings in all competitions – dropping them to seventh in the Premier League table and seven points adrift of the leaders.