Will Liverpool Do A United?

Obviously, the big news for this weekend - at least in the British media - is that of the imminent departure of Liverpool's charismatic manager Jurgen Klopp. I stumbled upon this news in one of the WhatsApp groups I frequent where rival fans were threatening the worst for Liverpool since their German manager was leaving. A quick glance at SkySports confirmed the worst - or the best - news of the weekend depending on which side you align with.

As I was scanning vigorously through the popular website to catch a glimpse of other important news I might have missed, another notification came in: Liverpool sporting director Jorg Schmadtke will leave at the end of January. My first line of thought was, "Is that connected to Klopp's departure?"

Though I don't know if Klopp was instrumental in getting Schmadtke as the sporting director. One thing that is clear is that from the name, Schmadtke is German. It's definitely too much of a coincidence to have a German director get hired to a team led by a German manager. But the fact that the director is leaving way before Klopp departs shows their exits may not be interconnected.

As I was thinking through this, I was easily reminded that Man United's problems began after David Gill and Sir Alex Ferguson quit their roles in 2013. Though not a like for like situation - Gill was Chief Executive, Schmadtke is sporting director - losing two strong individuals in close intervals will affect any team's rhythm. Add the fact that most of Klopp's coaching crew leaves with him and one has to wonder how pivotal this might be for Liverpool.

For now, the task of getting the next manager right is crucial. When Sir Alex begged for support for Moyes on the 19th of May 2013, we all thought all will be well. It's been 11 years after, all has not been well with Man United. As for Arsenal, the reason why it looked like they were quickly back on track after long serving Arsene Wenger's departure was because the team was already struggling for success before the Frenchman departed.

Likewise for Everton, they've not reached the heights David Moyes got them to since the wily Scotsman reached for the stars by swapping Merseyside for Manchester. His achievement at Everton was overlooked because he never won a trophy or got them to the Champions League. But since he left, the Merseyside club regressed from a team threatening to break the top 4 caucus to Premier League also-runs. It's been a struggle for them ever since.

In short, replacing long serving managers is never easy. One has to be incredibly lucky to get another one that will hit the ground running immediately. I hope Liverpool will not do a United and head into a tailspin once the German is gone. Else, we will all be at the mercy of these FFP cheats at the other side of Manchester. Or, they might as well get it all wrong and go on another 30 years journey in the wilderness. Either way is okay by me.


3 columns
2 columns
1 column