Liverpool assistant manager Zeljko Buvac has emerged as a shock contender to replace Arsene Wenger as Arsenal boss.
It emerged on Monday that the Bosnian took a leave of absence from Liverpool for “personal reasons”, just days before the Reds are due to face Roma in the second leg of their Champions League semi-final.
Buvac, who has worked with Klopp for the last 17 years, is expected to return to his role with the club but at this stage Liverpool have no idea when he will actually return to Anfield.
Some reports have suggested that the 56-year-old has decided to quit Merseyside for good, leading to speculation on Tuesday that he is being lined up to replace Wenger – who is quitting the Gunners after 22 years at the club at the end of the season.
Those links are perhaps not that surprising given that former Borussia Dortmund scout Sven Mislintat was appointed the Gunners’ head of recruitment in November and worked with Buvac at the Bundesliga club.
Another shock contender for the job is Jose Mourinho’s right-hand man at Manchester United, Rui Faria.
The Sun claims that the Gunners have compiled a 14-man shortlist for the job and that Faria, who has worked with Mourinho since 2001 – first as a fitness coach and then as his assistant – is in the frame for the Emirates hotseat.
The Portuguese is said to harbour managerial ambitions of his own and the report goes on to state that if he was approached then Faria would at the very least be keen on talks.
Gunners owner Stan Kroenke has shown that he is not afraid to hire rookie managers, having done so at three of his US sporting franchises, so there is the distinct possibility that he may decide to go down that route for Arsenal too.
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