Arne Slot reveals what he and Jurgen Klopp talked about and how they have a similar style of play

Arne Slot reveals what he and Jurgen Klopp talked about and how they have a similar style of play Team

After a long spell in charge of Anfield since 2015, Jurgen Klopp left the team after the 2023/24 season. Arne Slot, who has coached at Feyenoord and AZ Alkmaar, will take over from the great German manager and lead Liverpool as head coach.

In an interview with the official Liverpool website, he revealed that he had been referring to Premier League football since his time in Holland and had held discussions with former manager Klopp beforehand, who gave him some tips. He also talked about the comparison between his style of play and Liverpool’s style of play.

In Jürgen you are replacing an iconic figure and he is somebody who you clearly have a great deal of admiration for…

“Yeah. I am 45 now and [have been] watching football for a long time and watching football a lot, and I think this has been an era where everybody looked at the Barcelona side of Xavi [Hernandez], [Andres] Iniesta and [Lionel] Messi and the rivalry there was between Real Madrid with Cristiano Ronaldo being there.”

“And I think when that came to an end, the new rivalry in European football came because of Jürgen – he managed Liverpool and Pep Guardiola, of course, managed Manchester City and I think for everyone who loves football it was a fantastic era to watch the both of them getting the best out of each other. Yeah, I have seen a lot of games of Liverpool, a lot of games of City as well, and when you live in Europe the Premier League is probably the nicest league to follow. So, yeah, he has done a tremendous job over here and I am really happy with that as a fan, but now as his successor he left Liverpool in the best possible way, I think. So, a very good team, the fans are very good as well, so [I am] looking forward to it.”

Was it important that you spoke to Jürgen?

“Yeah. I did the same in my former clubs when I started over there but I think if someone worked at a club for nine years [and had] been so successful, you want to know all about it from him and you also want to know things of the players – although I think it is also important to get my own opinion about that. So, you can only use all this information he has because he did so well, not only in terms of results but I think also everybody saw in his farewell but also in the years before that how popular he was.”

“He gave me more than a few good tips but I think what stood out for me was that he was so happy for me and that – and I think he said this in the media as well – he would be my biggest fan from now on because he supports Liverpool in the best possible way, and you don’t see this very often. So, it says a lot about his character, the way he handled this situation as well.”

It’s important that you are your own man, of course, but from what we know there are a few similarities between your style and his, perhaps?

“I think there are and I think that is also one of the reasons why I came in, because I think the way Liverpool ‘scouted’ me – I’m not sure if that is the right word to use – they were looking for, not the exact same type, but I think when something has been successful [with] a certain way of playing you would like to extend this or to go on with this. This is probably one of the reasons they came to me as well.”

“Yeah, it is my style but I think it is the style of many modern coaches at the moment: we were all a bit inspired because of the rivalry between City and Liverpool. We were all inspired by Guardiola and Klopp and I think at a big club, which I worked in in Feyenoord as well, it is probably the only style you can play – to have the ball a lot, to have a lot of energy, and I think also now there are comparisons between the club I left behind and the club I am going to work for now. Both [sets of] fans love to see a team that wants to do everything to win a game and if things are tough they try to do everything to turn the game around and I think that has been done by Liverpool many times and I think that has been done by my former side Feyenoord many times as well.”