Premier League • England

Liverpool warned Klopp exit will lead to Man Utd style apocalypse as Prem boss is tipped to take charge

Jurgen Klopp is leaving Liverpool at the end of the season

Jurgen Klopp is leaving Liverpool at the end of the season

Liverpool have been warned to expect a period in the doldrums when Jurgen Klopp departs Anfield this summer, with his exit compared to Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure as Manchester United boss in 2013.

The Red Devils enjoyed sustained success during the hugely influential Ferguson era, winning an incredible 13 Premier Leaguen titles, five FA Cups four League Cups and two Champions League trophies over his 26 years at the helm. Since his exit, Manchester United have won a few trophies, including two Carabao Cups, an FA Cup and the Europa League, but have failed to finish higher than second in the 11 years since, while the Champions League also continues to elude them.

Now Liverpool have been warned to expect similar when Klopp departs, with the German having transformed the Merseysiders into one of the most fearsome sides in both English and European football.

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And while his reign of success cannot quite hold a torch to Ferguson’s (Klopp has won seven trophies so far over his nine years), the way he has united the Merseysiders and build some extremely solid foundations for years to come does draw comparison.

Behind the scenes, Liverpool are furiously working on landing on the very best successor to Klopp to take charge when the German does walk away at the end of the campaign.

And while their No 1 choice Xabi Alonso has made clear his wish to remain with Bayer Leverkusen, the Reds are reportedly nearing a deal to install Ruben Amorim as boss with TEAMtalk sources confirming the 39-year-old has made clear to Sporting Lisbon he wants to take up the job at Anfield.

Liverpool warned Klopp exit will lead to Fergie-style drop-off

However, regardless of whom takes charge and steps into Klopp’s shoes, former Liverpool defender John Arne Riise has made clear he expects the club to suffer as a result and believes a Fergie-style drop off will hit the Merseysiders in the same way it did United back in 2013.

The Norwegian full-back, who starred for the Reds between 2001 and 2008, also believes some big-name stars could also follow Klopp out the Anfield exit door.

“There is always a risk of a Fergie-style decline once Klopp leaves. That’s always a danger. When a manager leaves, will all the players stay? Who is coming in?” Riise told BoyleSports.

“Having that connection means a lot to players, and will they stay when he leaves? Will they have the same belief when a new manager comes in? It doesn’t always have to be the manager’s fault.

“If the players just don’t have the same feeling towards them. That’s why the next manager is a huge step for the club. So it’s not only who gets appointed, it’s who is going to stay? Who will tell their agent they want to leave now Klopp has left?”

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Next Liverpool manager: Reds old boy calls for De Zerbi to succeed Klopp

With Amorim now the overwhelming favourite to take charge, Liverpool will hope to rapidly conclude negotiations for the 39-year-old to become their next manager.

However, Riise feels the Reds would be better off moving for a man already making a big impact in the Premier League in the form of Roberto De Zerbi.

Explaining why he’d be delighted to see the Italian replace Klopp in the Anfield dug-out, Riise added: “Liverpool’s next manager depends on where the club wants to go. I love what De Zerbi has done at Brighton. He would be a good fit because he’s so focused on being who he is.

“He doesn’t change, he goes his own way. I would love to see him at Liverpool. It depends on what direction they want to go and also Klopp’s admiration for De Zerbi is a factor.

“Klopp, one way or another, will be giving the club some insight into how they should move forward and who they should look at and I believe De Zerbi is one of the top contenders and I’d be delighted to have him.”

Amorim boasts an incredible 70.70% win rate at Sporting Lisbon, while De Zerbi also has impressed with Brighton, having a 45.12% record at the AMEX.

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