Zeljko Buvac hits out at Klopp, claims he was always ‘the manager’

Date published: Monday 5th October 2020 7:03 - Robert McCarthy

Zeljko Buvac has claimed that he “did the job of manager” after finally breaking his silence after his shock departure from Liverpool in 2018.

Former Reds assistant boss Buvac quit Merseyside with no explanation beyond ‘personal reasons’ after working with Jurgen Klopp for 17 years.

It was claimed that the Bosnian-Serb was not pleased with Pep Lijnders’ growing influence at Anfield, with the Dutchman since being promoted to Buvac’s old job.

Buvac admitted that he did not congratulate Klopp or the Liverpool players on them ending their 30-year title drought.

And he hinted at a breakdown in his relationship with his former boss in conversation with Russian journalist Nobel Arustamyan, with the quotes translated by The Athletic.

“I didn’t,” Buvac said when asked if he had congratulated Klopp. “I was happy for Liverpool, for the fans, for the players. But I didn’t.”

The failure to even mention Klopp’s name was a notable one. Buvac, meamwhile, also gave an explanation as to why he has not since returned to management.

“It felt like I’ve been the manager for all those 17 years,” he said, having taken up the job of sporting director at Dynamo Moscow after also working with Klopp at Mainz and Borussia Dortmund.

Buvac the boss

“I did the job of a manager, except speaking in public and giving interviews.

“Apart from that, I had all the functions and tried to influence my team as much as I could to help them succeed.

“But I didn’t need that kind of attention.

“I don’t want to be a manager now. If Barcelona calls me then of course I’ll think about it but otherwise no,” he continued.

“You say I’m here just to stay occupied and wait for a better chance, but if you knew what kind of offers I had rejected during the pause in my career you wouldn’t have said that.

“But I won’t tell you which clubs.”



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