The long-term manager, building and overseeing a dynasty at a single club, is a near-mythical creature in modern football. The decades-long reigns of Bill Shankly, Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger, where the identities of the clubs become nigh inseparable from the men who lead them, are the exception rather than the rule. In fact, finding a manager who has kept his job in the Premier League for more than two seasons is becoming increasingly difficult, and only five men are currently in that particular position. Twelve are less than a year into their job.
Of course, this is the natural order of things on the continent, where managers routinely sign three-year deals, make an impact, and move on to the next one when their time is at an end. Little thought is spared for the idea of loyalty, identity and philosophy, and results are generally the only relevant currency. As such — and as is often the case with Liverpool's current head honcho — Jürgen Klopp is an outlier. Seven years at Mainz, seven years at Borussia Dortmund, and now in the second year of his Liverpool contract, with five more to go, the gegenpressing enthusiast shows a preference for long-term projects, and he believes it is what produces success.
"If I fulfil my contract with Liverpool, then there is a good chance I will have won something here. I could be in an uncomfortable situation if we do not win anything," Klopp said in an interview with Sport1. "People expect Liverpool to win trophies.
"We can't have any doubts, but rather work on making it one day. If you are convinced that the right folks work on it, then you can also believe in it. I believe that this joint effort makes it significantly more likely.
"I will not have been in charge of 10 different clubs once my managerial career is over," he added. "There is a not insignificant chance I will have coached three clubs. It is always quite easy for me to fully commit to what I am doing because they are often long-term projects."
Whether there is any value in keeping a manager around for season after season is a worthy discussion. Certainly the short-term solution seems an effective one for the top clubs across Europe, but it proves fruitless time and again for the minnows. Some will argue that a manager can only have an impact for so many years before the players have seen it all and require new input, while others will extol the virtues of stability and familiarity.
One thing is certain, however; the Liverpool brass are all-in on their German manager, and he is ready to reciprocate. Fingers crossed, it proves the right approach in this particular instance, and that, if the Liverpool job does become the final stop in Klopp's managerial career, he can leave the profession on a high note.