Premier League • England

Liverpool delight as ‘spectacular’ manager target tipped to emulate UCL icon; selling club finds replacement

Bayern coach Anthony Barry, Liverpool target Ruben Amorim

Sporting have found a replacement for Liverpool-linked Ruben Amorim

Liverpool have been handed a major lift in their bid to snare Ruben Amorim, with Sporting CP reportedly identifying an English replacement amid big praise for the Portuguese.

After learning that Jurgen Klopp would be leaving Liverpool at the end of the season, the Reds soon identified Xabi Alonso as their No 1 target to continue the exciting Anfield project. Alonso would be a fantastic successor as he is already loved by Liverpool supporters, while he is also doing an amazing job at Bayer Leverkusen.

But on Friday, the former midfielder announced his decision to reject Liverpool and Bayern in order to stay at Leverkusen.

Alonso revealed he used the international break to weigh up his future, and ultimately decided that he wants to help Leverkusen challenge for more silverware next season.

Alonso does have a release clause in his contract which becomes active in summer 2025, though that will be too late for Liverpool.

Returning Liverpool chief Michael Edwards now wants to land Amorim instead. On Saturday, it emerged that the 39-year-old can now be captured for €15million (£12.8m), rather than the £20m+ figures which have previously been talked about.

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As per The Times, Liverpool’s interest in Amorim is ramping up and Sporting are having to prepare for life without him. The Primeira Liga giants have surprisingly identified Thomas Tuchel’s No 2 at Bayern Munich, Anthony Barry, as a potential managerial hire this summer.

Barry has previously worked as a coach for Chelsea, the Republic of Ireland and Belgium. He is currently Portugal’s assistant boss, which is likely where Sporting’s interest has stemmed from.

Liverpool target a ‘spectacular’ coaching option

Liverpool, meanwhile, could end up winning more major trophies if Amorim replaces Klopp. The Liverpool Echo label Amorim a ‘spectacular’ manager who has the potential to shine at the very highest level.

Amorim is also in line to become the ‘new Jose Mourinho’ by swapping Portugal for England and making a huge impact on both the Premier League and European football as a whole.

When asked about Amorim, a former Benfica midfielder, Portuguese football expert Aaron Barton said: “He’s completely transformed the club and that is not an exaggeration.

“He arrived at Sporting in one of its most tumultuous times on and off the pitch; they hadn’t won a league title since 2001-02 and were playing third fiddle to Porto and Benfica.

“He got the players on board, an unstable board behind him but most impressive of all is that he completely galvanised the fanbase. He gave the supporters someone they could believe in, someone who would follow through on his word and try to bring Sporting out of the shadows and back to the summit of Portuguese football.

“He’s won the league and finished second in two of his three full seasons at the club. And this season, his fourth full season, they are many people’s favourites to win the title.”

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