In the footsteps of Jürgen Klopp
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Steven Gerrard became a Liverpool legend as a player and shines at his first coaching position in Glasgow. Not only experts see him as Jürgen Klopp’s successor – also Klopp himself. Both are still under contract with their clubs until 2024.
Sa contract runs until the end of June 2024, i.e. just over three and a half years. But Jürgen Klopp has already committed himself. “If I was asked who should follow me, I would say Stevie. I’ll help him whenever I can, ”said the Liverpool coach some time ago about his possible successor.
By the way, the Stevie we’re talking about is longtime LFC captain Steven Gerrard. And he’s in the process of transforming the long starving Rangers from Glasgow into something like a copy of Klopp’s Liverpool and thus almost inevitably positioning himself as the heir of the German who is probably the most popular German on the island.
Unbeaten in 20 games
After 14 matchdays, the Rangers are leading the Scottish Premiership and have already scored an astonishing 37 goals. Alone the most recent 8: 0 against bottom line Hamilton was a football festival – including a pathetic announcement from Gerrard. “Our stadium will be a fortress again. We want to be a terrible opponent and defend our goal with our lives. The opponents have come here for a long time and had a good time. That won’t happen again, ”said the 40-year-old Rangers coach. By the way, archenemy Celtic is supposed to screw up the record of ten championships in a row.
When Gerrard, who played a total of 504 games for Liverpool from 1998 to 2015 and scored 120 goals, took up his first senior position at Rangers two years ago, the glorious club from Ibrox was completely out of paint. Although they quickly fought their way back from the fourth division to the first floor after the bankruptcy, they were powerless against Celtic. Gerrard had come to change that – with an approach on and off the pitch not dissimilar to Klopp’s.
From day one, Gerrard made the Rangers a “bullshit-free zone”, as the Daily Mail put it. The Liverpool legend says straight out what doesn’t suit him, but never misses the necessary respect. Everyone should know where they stand, even if they don’t like to hear it. The training ground has been improved so that the players can spend more time there. The fines have also been tightened. This is how Gerrard managed to transform the heterogeneous squad into a disciplined unit that has now been unbeaten for 20 games.
“Football hasn’t changed. It’s just like a hundred years ago. I tell my players what Gerard Houllier and Rafa Benitez told me in 1999, ”said Gerrard. “Some coaches complicate things. I tell my team very clearly how things are and what I expect from them. “
Word has got around that the Rangers have become something like a mini-LFC. “The system is similar to that of Liverpool, only the players are different. They play the same style away and at home, ”said Jorge Jesus, Benfica Lisbon coach, recently. The Portuguese record champions just managed to secure a 3: 3 against Gerrard’s team of the nameless in early November.
Two years ago in Russia it became clear that the big star is the coach. The Rangers had to compete in the playoffs for the Europa League at FC Ufa. Shortly after landing, Gerrard was directed into an interrogation room by an allegedly grim-looking officer. There were a number of Liverpool shirts on the table – and Gerrard was kindly asked to sign them.