EPL

Liverpool 'ahead of schedule', says departing Klopp ahead of Slot arrival

By Sports Desk May 19, 2024

Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool are "ahead of schedule" after suggesting their third-placed finish in the Premier League marks a "statement" in a challenging competition.

Reds manager Klopp took charge of his final game with Liverpool in Sunday's 2-0 victory over Wolves, with Alexis Mac Allister and Jarell Quansah both on target in the first half at Anfield.

Liverpool threatened a title challenge midway through this campaign but fell away from contention alongside Arsenal and eventual winners Manchester City, settling for Champions League football next term.

Klopp refuted suggestions Liverpool need a significant "overhaul" as Feyenoord head coach Arne Slot prepares to start his tenure at Anfield next season.

"I'm sure you will all agree there does not need to be an overhaul," the departing Liverpool manager told Sky Sports after his emotional farewell on the pitch.

"We finished third. We were ahead of schedule. It's a statement in this strong league and I'm absolutely fine with that."

Klopp announced his intentions to leave back in January, with Sunday marking a memorable goodbye for the former Borussia Dortmund head coach.

"I thought it might be more sad in the beginning but when people realise, it's all good," he continued.

"If I carry on, these guys and others will say 'he's been there too long'. You have to be the spark. I love the squad. There is so much potential. They will make changes here and there.

"There has been such a long lead-up to this day and it was really intense. I had my bad moments as well but thank God, not today.

"I'm just thankful for what has happened, when you are in it, you forget sometimes how great it is. You take it for granted.

"Now I stand here, I'm just so happy I'm a part of the club's history. It's wonderful."

Klopp believes he leaves Liverpool having played the most entertaining football, even if his tenure ended with fewer trophies than some seasons merited due to the brilliance of Pep Guardiola's Man City.

"It's so super special that it's difficult to explain," Klopp added. "We live in a world where it's all about results for others.

"We learn that not getting absolutely everything is fine. It's such a massive lesson for life. It's not about that, it's about the journey and the togetherness and that's what I love. Things might not always go perfect.

"The other clubs, with the most money and the best managers, they win it. We didn't have the best manager and never had the best team but for a while we played the best football and I love that.

"We are a rock-solid club and don't overspend. People say 'you didn't spend enough.' What the heck do you want? I just understand this from the Liverpool way."

Related items

  • Kerr signs new two-year contract with Chelsea Kerr signs new two-year contract with Chelsea

    Chelsea striker Sam Kerr has signed a new two-year deal until 2026, the club announced on Thursday.

    Kerr, whose contract was due to expire at the end of the Women's Super League season, has scored 99 goals in 128 matches since joining from Chicago Red Stars in 2019.

    The 30-year-old has played a huge role in the success of Emma Hayes' side in recent years, winning five consecutive league titles along with three FA Cups, two League Cups and the Community Shield. 

    During the 2022-23 campaign, Kerr scored 29 goals in 38 appearances in all competitions, making her 100th appearance for the Blues in the process. 

    The striker has not played since January because of an anterior cruciate ligament injury and has been ruled out of the Australia squad for this summer's Olympics in Paris.

    "It’s really exciting and a very proud moment for me," Kerr said after putting pen to paper on her new deal. "Having the opportunity to stay at a club like Chelsea means a lot to me. I’m really excited to continue to push and to try to win trophies."

    Since arriving in England, Kerr has claimed the Golden Boot twice and was runner-up to Spain's Aitana Bonmati at the Ballon d'Or awards last year.

    Kerr would also become the first player to be awarded the Football Writers’ Association Women’s Footballer of the Year prize twice in a row. 

  • USA are ready for Copa America following Brazil draw, says Berhalter USA are ready for Copa America following Brazil draw, says Berhalter

    Gregg Berhalter has said that the United States are ready for the Copa America following their 1-1 draw with Brazil on Wednesday. 

    Berhalter's side concluded their preparations for the tournament with an improved display in Florida, having lost 5-1 to Colombia three days prior.

    Many feared the worst as Real Madrid's Rodrygo gave the visitors an early advantage, but Christian Pulisic's second half free-kick was enough to share the spoils, as Matt Turner made 11 saves in the contest, the most by a USA keeper since Tim Howard in the 2014 World Cup. 

    "We asked for teamwork and intensity," Berhalter said. "The way we framed it is two things that are totally in their control. It doesn't matter about the opponent, it doesn't matter about the field, the fans or anything.

    "That's the type of effort that we saw today. The boys certainly did really well on that and that was good. We feel like we made a little step."

    The USA kickstart their Copa America campaign on June 23 against Bolivia in Arlington, before taking on Panama and Uruguay in Group C. 

    Berhalter believes the result against the five-time World Cup winners is a little step on the way to being successful against the better teams on the international stage. 

    "It's not a huge step, but it's a little step to be able to play against an amazingly talented Brazil team and bend but not break," Berhalter added.

    "And give them problems as well, push them as well. So for us, looking at it, we think it's a good end to a preparation camp when we're ready for Copa."

  • United States 1-1 Brazil: Pulisic free-kick caps Copa America warm-up United States 1-1 Brazil: Pulisic free-kick caps Copa America warm-up

    The United States capped their Copa America preparations with a 1-1 draw against Brazil on Wednesday, with Christian Pulisic scoring a fine free-kick.

    USA captain Pulisic drilled a low effort beyond Alisson 26 minutes in, after a mazy run ended with him being chopped down by Wolves midfielder Joao Gomes on the edge of the area.

    A full-strength Brazil side had gone ahead nine minutes earlier when the lively Raphinha split the hosts' defence with a fine pass for Rodrygo, who beat Matt Turner at his near post.

    Rodrygo went close with an acrobatic effort shortly after half-time, but neither side was able to find a second-half winner, primarily due to the performances of Alisson and Turner.

    The Liverpool goalkeeper made a great stop to deny Pulisic shortly after the hour mark, and Turner responded by tipping Rodrygo's outside-of-the-boot effort to safety.

    Vinicius Junior fired across goal and off-target deep into stoppage time as the Selecao were made to settle for a draw 12 days out from their Copa opener against Costa Rica. The USA open their campaign against Bolivia in Texas on June 22.

    Data Debrief: Captain America strikes again

    If the USA are to enjoy a successful Copa campaign on home soil, they will need Pulisic to be right at it after an encouraging first season with Milan.

    He is developing a taste for scoring against CONMEBOL opponents, having now netted versus Bolivia, Brazil, Chile and Venezuela.

    He is just the third American man to achieve that feat, after Clint Dempsey and Landon Donovan.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.