Jurgen Klopp is on the minds of Juventus chiefs as they ponder the future of Andrea Pirlo – but reports claim that the move is unlikely.
Juventus appointed Pirlo in an unexpected turn of events last summer. After the removal of former Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri from his post as head coach, Pirlo was thrown straight in at the deep end when no obvious candidates emerged.
It was Pirlo’s first taste of management and was a big leap for the former midfielder to take. Indeed, the club’s initial plan was to put him in charge of their B team.
However, since there was a lack of high-profile replacements for Sarri, Juventus opted to offer Pirlo an immediate promotion before he had even got to work.
The size of the task has been challenging for Pirlo. Juventus had won the last nine Serie A titles but seem unlikely to make it 10 in a row.
Currently third in the table, they are 10 points behind Inter Milan with both sides having 11 games to go. In fact, they are closer to falling out of the Champions League places than they are to returning to the summit.
Hence, Pirlo is already under pressure. This time, though, Juventus are hoping to find a high-profile replacement if they part ways with their head coach.
According to La Repubblica, one of the names under consideration would be Klopp.
The German has found himself in a similar position at Liverpool this season. After being so dominant last term, even a top-four finish looks at risk for the Reds this season.
There have been questions of Klopp’s future, however unlikely it seems that he would be sacked. For example, when the Germany job became available, it was an obvious link for the Liverpool boss.
Klopp swiftly distanced himself from that speculation, instead committing to Liverpool. But another job opportunity may come up for the 53-year-old.
The Italian newspaper claims that Klopp could be a candidate to take over at Juventus. However, before they get their hopes up, it has been warned that they cannot afford the Reds boss.
The same goes for Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola, who was also on Juve’s radar.
Juventus turn to three others
Hence, the Old Lady are likely to have to look elsewhere. Indeed, La Repubblica add that they have a three-man shortlist to replace Pirlo.
In contention are Atalanta’s Gian Piero Gasperini, Lazio’s Simone Inzaghi and the out-of-work Luciano Spalletti.
All three have significant experience in Serie A, although those in work would need to be bought out of their contracts elsewhere.
As for Klopp, he is sticking by his plan to stay at Liverpool until the end of his contract in 2024 before taking a year’s sabbatical.