Who is the ideal Jurgen Klopp replacment? Opinion

Who is the ideal Jurgen Klopp replacment?

Who is the ideal Jurgen Klopp replacment?

Mike Gordon, the most hands-on of Liverpool's owners, is the man tasked with the unenviable duty to replace Jurgen Klopp as manager by the end of the season.

Described as the "brain of all the things at Liverpool" for American owners Fenway Sports Group , Gordon now has to decisively pick the next leader of this wonderful group of footballers while ensuring silverware is still possible in the transition.

Because the difference between now and 2015, when FSG exceeded expectations by replacing Brendan Rodgers with Klopp, is that Liverpool are once again goliaths in the European scene.

Who are the potential candidates to replace Jurgen Klopp?

Xabi Alonso

Who is the ideal Jurgen Klopp replacment?

Alonso is the clear favourite to replace Klopp and not just because he was very successful as a midfielder for the Reds.

He's also doing very well as a manager.

Jose Mourinho predicted his success to come as a manager in an interview with Top Eleven in 2019. The Portuguese coach predicted that Alonso would become a top coach, citing his family's history of football excellence.

Mourinho said: "With Xabi Alonso, you always saw there was a manager there. Similarly to me, his father was a player. He grew up with a father who was a player then a manager, and then he became a player, of course much better than I was.

"His knowledge of the game was very high and then he played in Spain, England and Germany and was coached by Guardiola at Bayern, by myself in Real Madrid, by Ancelotti in Real Madrid and by Benítez in Liverpool. So if you put all that together, then I would say that Xabi has the conditions to be a very good coach."

Alonso started his managing career by studying for his coaching badges after he retired in 2018 alongside the likes of Raul, Xavi Hernandez and Victor Valdes.

Like Liverpool and Klopp in the Premier League, Leverkusen and Alonso top the Bundesliga charts.

His thrilling young side has scored 52 goals while only conceding 14 in 20 games. They lead Bayern Munich by two points while demonstrating many of the core principles Liverpool employ in Klopp's "heavy metal" system.

Brief look at Alonso's tactics

xabi alonso bayer leverkusen bundesliga

Again like Klopp, Alonso wants his players as close to the opposition goal at all times to maximise the benefits of the geggenpress.

For those that aren't familiar, geggenpressing is the art of 'counter-pressing' which is a response after losing possession, immediately shutting down passing lanes and closing the player with the ball down as quickly as possible while doing so in unison with teammates to win the ball back extremely fast.

It's the fundamentals of Jurgen Klopp's success in Europe with Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool.

Alonso is clearly a student of his as he buys into the same principles.

Speaking to the Bundesliga, Alonso said: "The more passes we make on the opponents half, the better the positioning will be for the Gegenpressing.

"If we play too far and quick to the other half, we will be far away from each other, the lines will be far away and that will make Gegenpressing impossible to do properly."

Yet, despite his encouraging and exciting coaching performance in Germany, it is a risk to sign a coach that is so inexperienced no matter the credentials.

Roberto De Zerbi

kaouru mitoma roberto de zerbi premier league

Liverpool are also looking at Brighton manager Roberto De Zerbi as an option to replace Klopp when he takes his leave at the end of the season.

While he may not have been first choice for some, there is no denying the 44-year-old is a talented manager and could be able to do something special with the talent available at Anfield.

Like Alonso, it's a risky move given his lack of experience in elite European football but it's not like there are many managers with Klopp's CV available.

Alexis Mac Allister may be excited about linking up with his former coach, who put the Argentine's wonderful composure and playmaking to great use on the South Coast. Up in the North West, De Zerbi and Mac Allister would have the chance to pick up where they left off which could see the no.10 move further forward.

Who is the ideal Jurgen Klopp replacment?

While De Zerbi may lack an extensive CV, there are no doubts that his teams can play beautiful, expansive football and who knows, maybe he can put Kaoru Mitoma in his suitcase and bring him to Anfield?

De Zerbi isn't the favourite to land the Liverpool job but he is one of the most interesting names linked with the job.

Liverpool tend to go for unexpected options across the board although a lot more rests on this particular piece of recruitment.

Alonso or De Zerbi? Who would be your pick? Let me know on Twitter.

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