Klopp's Peculiar Charisma
Klopp played for only one team during his entire career as a player. But, this former German striker and defender and the current coach has certainly influenced his team. Today we analyze Klopp’s charisma and how he’s left his German mark on English soccer.
Jurgen Klopp’s charisma and character
With his blonde hair and trendy round glasses, Jurgen Klopp doesn’t go unnoticed in any stadium where his team plays. He’s idolized in both Dortmund and Liverpool. What distinguishes this German, winner of several championships since he began his career? As a coach for his beloved FSV Mainz 05 in the second division of the Bundesliga, let’s learn more about him.
For starters, his game style certainly sets him apart, then his longing to take his players to the next level. Even if they already play for one of the most important teams in England, the “Reds”!
Klopp’s peculiar charisma, as well as his temper, are maybe his most distinctive traits. During games, he shouts, gestures, and he just won’t stand still. He wears casual sports clothes (no suit and tie). During press conferences, he doesn’t speak in jargon and he explains what happened (in his opinion) during the 90 minutes of gameplay. He avoids using technical terms or sounding like a college professor.
Nobody can deny this German, born in Stuttgart in 1967, is authentic, unruly, classic, traditional… some even call him “old school”. However, it doesn’t seem to matter, as long as he keeps on winning!
Klopp’s game: Borussia Dortmund
After eight years coaching the team that saw his birth in soccer, FSV Mainz 05, and which took him to the qualifying round of the Bundesliga in 2005, Klopp signed an agreement with Borussia Dortmund in 2008. The agreement was for a two year period, but he ended up staying for seven years. It would seem that this man enjoys long relationships.
Borussia ended their last season in a very poor 13th position. After Klopp’s arrival, they ended in the sixth position and then fifth during the following two seasons. But that’s not all, in 2010 he won the Bundesliga championship and repeated the title in the following year.
In 2012 he made it to the Champions League finals where he lost to Bayern Munich. One year later he won the German Supercup against the same team (soccer always allows for revenge) and he won again in 2014. He won five titles in four years! No doubt a considerable amount of successes.
Well then, what was Klopp’s secret to keep on winning? It seems his tactical strategy was the key. His strategy was based on a 4-2-3-1, and although you could change the players, his model would remain intact.
The play would always begin with his defenders playing wide and the midfielder coming down to receive the pass. Another option he used were long passes aimed at the only striker on the field. His defense was an impenetrable wall that would counter strike, leaving his rivals without a chance.
Klopp`s Germany moves to Liverpool
After a year of rest in 2015 and refusing an offer from Olympique de Marseille, Klopp arrived in Liverpool to take charge of one the most traditional and respected teams in the Premier League. His initial contract was for a one year term, but in 2016 he signed an extension to 2022, confirming our theory regarding long relationships.
Since Jurgen Klopp’s charisma arrived in Liverpool, the team has become one of the best during these past few years. Even after losing some “star” players. For this, he had to change several techniques that he disliked and of course, did not match well with his game style.
The pressure that came from above, the defenders making deep, long passes, counter attacks and ball recoveries that led Dortmund to the top have now been “transferred” to Liverpool as a legacy. This is how a new identity was created, based on sacrifice, intensity and physical deployment. In Klopp’s ideal scheme, all of the players must gather near the opponent’s goal and all passes must go through the “10” position.
The last season ended at the second Champions League final, achieving another second place. This doesn’t seem to affect him, especially when we look at the rhythm that the Reds are playing within the Premier League.