Jurgen Klopp will be the People’s Champion if they win the Premier League, says ex-Liverpool Legend and Sky pundit Phil Thompson. Klopp has transformed Liverpool’s fortunes and Liverpool are currently fighting for the Premier League title against Manchester City and Chelsea.
Phil Thompson the ex-Liverpool legend believes Liverpool will be bang on course for the title if they cope with Philippe Coutinho’s injury lay-off. He’s easily been the best player in the Premier League over the first three months of the campaign. Sadly he could be out until the New Year with ankle ligament damage after being carried off in the 2-0 win against Sunderland.
Thompson said: “Everything about the club is absolutely flying – like most Liverpool fans, I now look forward to games not just because of the results but for the quality of football and the sense of occasion.”
Doubters into believers
Thompson commented on the current atmosphere around Anfield. When Klopp arrived at Anfield he wanted to turn doubters into believers – he’s certainly done that!! “I think Klopp’s Liverpool would be the people’s champions because of the way they play – and if he ends our 27-year wait for the title, his legend will be made at Anfield forever.” Klopp’s swagger, his heart on his sleeve and his casual approach has won over so many people. Even non-Liverpool fans love him. Thompson went as far to say; “He would be the new Shanks (Bill Shankly) and the fifth Beatle rolled into one.”
“There was a feelgood factor about the place when Brendan Rodgers came so close to the title in 2014, and they scored more than 100 goals that season, but if anything Jurgen Klopp’s side is even better to watch and he’s got the fans eating out of the palm of his hand.”
“Manchester United and Everton fans aside, we were probably most people’s second-favourite team that year in the same way that neutrals were rooting for Leicester to win the title as outrageous underdogs last season.”
Could Anfield witness a new chapter after Istanbul?
“We’ve had the miracle of Istanbul and we’ve had the cup treble under Gerard Houllier. The person who breaks the mould and brings the title back to Liverpool will be on that sort of scale.”
“Fans come up to me on a daily basis asking, ‘Can we do it?’ – and, yes, I believe they have a great chance this year.”
“But we are about to find out whether Coutinho’s injury is a bump in the road or a major disruption.
“If Liverpool are still top, or running neck-and-neck with their rivals, by the time Coutinho is back, they are going to be right there.”
“Klopp has got three lads who operate and interchange in what I call the ‘magic zone’ – between the opponents’ defence and midfield. They are so influential, absolutely key to the way they play.”
“Coutinho, Adam Lallana and Roberto Firmino have all been fantastic this season, and it’s going to be interesting to see how Liverpool cope.”
“If Coutinho is going to be out for a few games, they will miss his energy as much as his quality.”
Concerns about depth
Like many people he does have concerns with the depth of the squad if we are to make a good challenge towards the business end of the season.
“To be honest, I don’t think the squad runs deeper than 13 or 14 players in terms of top-level class. So if they lose any more of those three lads who have been running the show, Jurgen’s resources are going to be stretched.”
“By the Monday night before Christmas, when they go to Everton for the derby. We will have a pretty good idea whether Liverpool are in the title race for the long haul. That is going to be an unbelievable occasion.”
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