‘I was on fire from the first second’: Jurgen Klopp recalls how top secret meeting with Liverpool in New York led to Anfield giants bringing an end to his sabbatical by hiring him in 2015
- Jurgen Klopp has opened up about his decision to accept the Liverpool job
- The ex-Borussia Dortmund coach was on holiday when his agent phoned him
- Klopp flew to New York to hold top secret talks and was soon offered the role
- The tactician has won the Premier League and Champions League at Anfield
Jurgen Klopp has opened up on the top secret talks that cut short his holiday and led to his appointment as Liverpool boss in 2015.
The Anfield outfit had been languishing in mid-table at the start of the 2015/16 campaign, despite coming agonisingly close to the title just the year before, and opted to sack Brendan Rodgers.
Their first-choice target to replace him was Jurgen Klopp, who had vowed to take a full season out to spend time with his family after leaving Borussia Dortmund, and the 53-year-old revealed how Liverpool snapped him up in a new BBC documentary.
Jurgen Klopp has revealed all about the top secret meetings before his Liverpool appointment
Liverpool’s first-choice target was Klopp after Brendan Rodgers’ sacking in the 2015/16 season
Klopp admitted that he had been enjoying some sun on holiday in Portugal when his agent phoned him to alert him to Liverpool’s interest.
The highly-ambitious tactician, despite having to prematurely end his break away from the game, was immediately enticed by the offer and jetted out to the United States to hear their pitch.
He said: ‘We were on holiday in Lisbon and I got a call from my agent. He told me about the interest of Liverpool. So our plans at that moment looked completely different actually, because we wanted to make more holidays!
Klopp seemed set on taking a campaign away from football after leaving Borussia Dortmund
‘And then I told my family and my boys were immediately like “yes!”. I looked in Ulla’s eyes and she was “er, when?”.
‘When you make such a big promise like I did when I left Dortmund, that we were going to have a year to ourselves, and after four months you come around the corner with different plans… you have to ask at least.
‘I was pretty much on fire from the first second really, they didn’t have to convince me.’
His family’s positive reaction to the proposal mirrors that of Liverpool’s principal owner, John W Henry.
Liverpool principal owner John W Henry recalled hearing that Klopp was interested in the role
As part of the same programme, the American businessman has recalled the moment when it first dawned on him that the Merseyside giants were free to move for Klopp five years ago.
‘I remember watching Jurgen in Dortmund when I was really still a student of the game and thinking that’s the kind of football we wanted to play, I think they called it heavy metal football,’ he said.
‘When (FSG president) Mike Gordon called me one day and said, “we’re going to have the chance to meet with Jurgen in New York”, to me that was one of the most exciting phone calls during the 10 years that we’ve been with the club.’
The appointment has proven inspired for Liverpool. With Klopp at the helm, the club have tasted success in the Premier League, the Champions League and the Club World Cup.