Premier League • England

Klopp compares ‘insane’ Dortmund squad with current Liverpool crop, naming standout difference

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp celebrates after they beat Crystal Palace, January 2022

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has confidently declared that his current team is better than his game-changing Borussia Dortmund squad.

Klopp emerged as one of the most exciting coaches in Europe with his spell at Dortmund. Indeed, he ended Bayern Munich’s grip on the Bundesliga title with two triumphs in 2011 and 2012, respectively.

His Dortmund side also finished runners-up in the German top flight in 2013 and 2014. Dortmund also reached the Champions League final in 2013, but Bayern pipped them to a league and Champions League double.

Klopp consequently left in 2015 and Liverpool snapped him up ahead of Manchester United. He has since become one of the Reds’ greatest-ever managers, winning the Premier League and Champions League.

He has enjoyed a fantastic array of players at Anfield but he is only now enjoying the rarity of having a fully-fit squad. And amid the quality of players on show, Klopp has insisted that it is his best-ever squad in his coaching career.

Comparing his current crop to his Dortmund team, the manager told a press conference: “My opinion is clear – top squad, best I ever had, one of the [best] is this club’s history.

“We grew together as a group and as a team, and [that is why] I rank them that high.

“I had outstanding squads in my life, thank God. The Dortmund squad of 10/11, 11/12 was insane.”

Liverpool face season-defining run of games before international break

Liverpool face season-defining run of games before international break

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp faces a season-defining run of fixtures before the international break at the end of March.

But Klopp insisted that Liverpool’s ability to keep hold of their star talents is the major difference between the teams.

He added: “The only problem was we only had it for two years and then the football world thought the Dortmund journey was long enough so now let’s pick a few [of their players].

“That doesn’t happen here. We can keep them and that means we can build on the things we did together and that makes a difference.”

Indeed, Liverpool’s last major sale of a player at the peak of their powers was Philippe Coutinh. The midfielder was a vital part of Klopp’s team but chased his Barcelona dream instead.

From there, Georginio Wijnaldum was also a nailed-on starter for Klopp in midfield. However, he left as a free agent in summer 2021 after failing to agree a new contract.

Klopp has wealth of options but Jota concern

Liverpool players Mo Salah, Virgil van Dijk and James Milner with manager Jurgen Klopp

Mohamed Salah has been the standout attacker in Klopp’s Liverpool team and is closing in on 150 Reds goals.

Klopp in fact admitted surprise on Friday after only recently talking about the Egyptian’s landmark of 100 Liverpool strikes.

Despite concern over the ankle injury for Diogo Jota, the manager has the likes of Sadio Mane and new signing Luis Diaz to call on in attack.

Meanwhile, defence is another area where Liverpool have beefed up significantly.

After losing all three senior centre-halves to long-term injury last term, Klopp added £36million signing Ibrahima Konate to his ranks.