'Man Utd, Arsenal or Chelsea would have had Klopp' - Liverpool's timing hailed by Thompson

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The ex-Reds skipper believes those at Anfield made the perfect appointment back in 2015, with a man considered to "get" the club kept away from rivals

Liverpool got their timing spot on when appointing Jurgen Klopp, says Phil Thompson, as Manchester United, Arsenal or Chelsea would all have pounced on the German coach.

With Brendan Rodgers ushered through the Anfield exits in October 2015, the Reds turned to a former Borussia Dortmund boss to get them back on track.

There has been no silverware to savour as yet, but Klopp has led Liverpool to the Champions League final and restored a standing among the Premier League’s top four.

He is considered to “get” a club which demands so much from its manager, with those on Merseyside having done well to keep a highly rated talent out of the clutches of a rival as those at Old Trafford, Emirates Stadium and Stamford Bridge contemplated changes of their own.

Former Reds skipper Thompson told AS of a talismanic presence on the touchline: “I think to be a great Liverpool manager you have to really 'get' the club.

“And what I mean by that is that any modern manager knows the history of Liverpool. But you have to get it, you have to sense it, to really feel it, to smell it. And Klopp does.

“I did a lovely interview with him for our Saturday programme. I went and chatted with him at our Melwood training ground and I asked him why he came? Did he feel that it was something that was meant to be, him and Liverpool?

“His first managerial job was at Mainz who he had played for and after it was 'You'll Never Walk Alone' with Borussia Dortmund, and now he has come to Anfield, a club whose anthem has always been 'You'll Never Walk Alone'. Did he think it was always meant to be?

Jurgen Klopp Liverpool Phil Thompson wanted by Arsenal Chelsea Man Utd

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“And he said to me that he had the opportunity of going to Manchester United and thought: ‘I don't think this fits, this doesn't seem right.’ His wife said to him: ‘Jurgen, if Liverpool Football Club come for you, that is for you,’ and he felt she was totally right. He felt like a manager at the right time, the right fit, for Liverpool.

“When Liverpool took Jurgen Klopp, [Louis] van Gaal and [Arsene] Wenger were under pressure, so was [Jose] Mourinho at Chelsea. If Liverpool hadn't moved when they did then any of those clubs would have taken Jurgen Klopp because he was available.

“And I think the timing of it all seemed to fit into place. He comes in, he understands the people, the people understand him. They see his passion and I think that's a very, very important element of what it is to be part of Liverpool Football Club.”

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