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Lijnders hints at Liverpool switch
During Jurgen Klopp’s almost seven-year stay at Anfield so far, a lot has changed.
First, there’s a new, state-of-the-art £50million training ground for senior players. Anfield’s capacity has increased thanks to impressive construction on the main stand and there have even been changes to the staff that make up Klopp’s coaching staff.
Even then, to some followers, these changes may seem small and insufficient, which the average follower may not notice.
However, one transition that has been anything but ambiguous over this seven-year period has been Liverpool’s change in style of play. From relentless ‘heavy-metal’ football during the German’s early days in office to more thoughtful and self-reliant practice during Liverpool’s crusade to become champions of England for the 19th time. Klopp has always ensured that his team continues to evolve, year after year.
It’s a belief he shares with his close friend and Liverpool assistant manager Pep Lijnders, who feels it’s vital that an ounce of ‘unpredictability’ is added to the squad composition ahead of each season. . It’s a mantra that explains the rationale behind the decision to spend a potential £85m on the services of Darwin Nunez earlier this month.
The deal was signed and sealed just weeks after Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti revealed how easy it was to prepare for the Champions League final against Klopp’s men due of their distinct style of play.
“I think it helped that Liverpool were easier to read than the others because they have a very clear identity and we were able to prepare as we did,” the Los Blancos boss said.
“We knew what strategy to adopt, don’t give them space behind the defense to collide. Maybe our football wasn’t extraordinarily beautiful tonight aesthetically, but playing from the back to incentivize their pressing wasn’t a good idea. We had a few longer balls and then when their press in our half went down we were able to control the ball more especially in the second half.
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