Premier League • England

Liverpool tipped to appoint ‘intelligent’ manager as Klopp heir; Anfield role will be ‘even easier’ than current job

Feyenoord coach Arne Slot is set to be confirmed as the new Liverpool manager

Feyenoord coach Arne Slot is set to be confirmed as the new Liverpool manager

Two prominent figures have explained why Feyenoord boss Arne Slot is the perfect man to succeed Jurgen Klopp at Anfield following news of a third miss for Michael Edwards.

The decision on who should replace departing Reds legend Jurgen Klopp will be made by the returning Michael Edwards and sporting director Richard Hughes.

Xabi Alonso had been eyed, though the classy Spaniard elected to remain loyal to Bayer Leverkusen who he’ll spend at least one more season with.

Ruben Amorim of Sporting CP quickly emerged as the new favourite to take the reins. However, Fabrizio Romano and David Ornstein have both stated it’s highly unlikely Amorim will wind up at Anfield.

Furthermore, Inter’s Serie A-winning manager, Simone Inzaghi, is primed to remain in Milan despite links with Liverpool.

As such, alternative candidates are coming to the fore and among the new crop Liverpool are reportedly showing interest in is Feyenoord’s Arne Slot.

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Indeed, the Daily Express claimed Liverpool plan to interview a number of candidates over the next 10 days or so before reaching their final decision.

And unlike last time when the outstanding Klopp presented itself as an immediate option, Liverpool are taking a far more methodical process this time around as they look to ensure their new era is not as painfully felt as some observers expect.

Per the Express, Edwards was never all that serious about landing Amorim anyway, with the Reds reportedly ‘using him as a smokescreen’ to land their top choice; now claimed to be Slot.

Transfer guru Fabrizio Romano subsequently stated direct contact between Slot and Liverpool has already taken place. A second official contact between the manager and club has been scheduled.

The 45-year-old guided Feyenoord to just their second Eredivisie title this side of the century last season. Slot followed that up with another trophy this term when lifting the KNVB Cup (Dutch FA Cup) on Sunday.

Now, Dutch legend Marco van Basten has pinpointed a multitude of reasons why his fellow countryman is the perfect Klopp heir.

Among the many points the former striker raised was Slot’s ability to manage big egos as well as his tactics becoming even more effective with better quality players.

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Slot backed to be a revelation at Anfield

“I think he’s really good,” began Van Basten. “I hope he stays in the Netherlands longer because it is an enrichment for Dutch football. He can really go anywhere – Bayern Munich, Liverpool… I’m really convinced of that.

“I’ve spoken to him a few times and I think what he does and what he sees is very strong. He gets along very well with the group of players, is tactically well-versed, can explain things well and is calm and intelligent. I think he can go to any club, even at the very difficult clubs, because he is so intelligent.

“He has a lot of qualities and he shows it at every level. He first did it at AZ, and now at Feyenoord. And Feyenoord is a really complicated club. He has been doing well for three years, while PSV and Ajax have much more options in terms of money.

“He could really fit anywhere. If you get AZ and Feyenoord to play football, you also get big clubs like AC Milan to play football. You can clearly see his hand where he is the coach.

“I think it will even be easier for him at a higher level because he has better players who understand his ideas faster. I also think he is smart enough to manage stubborn players.”

Former Netherlands international Wim Jonk also backed Slot to succeed at Liverpool.

“He gave Feyenoord a face,” said Jonk. “Arne has made enormous strides, so I would like that. Liverpool is also a bit like the Feyenoord of England.”

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