After a season that has Liverpool second in the injury league, there was little chance that former head of fitness and conditioning Ryland Morgans would have his contract renewed. Opting to focus full-time on his role with the Welsh international team ahead of the Euros this summer, Morgans left his position prematurely last week, leaving U21 fitness coach Andy O'Boyle in charge until the summer.
Liverpool have moved quickly to secure Morgans' replacement, and, as has been the trend since Jürgen Klopp took over, they looked to Germany. Seemingly selecting the cream of the crop, the club have appointed Bayern München's fitness coach Andreas Kornmayer. Supposedly hand-picked by Klopp, the 41-year old has spent the last decade at the Allianz Arena, working under three different managers in Louis van Gaal, Jupp Heynckes and Pep Guardiola since being promoted from youth to senior fitness coach in 2010. He will join the Reds ahead of pre-season training in July.
While it is often difficult to pin down the impact of single staff members on a whole squad - and doubly so for a man who seldom gives interviews or talks about his methods - surviving multiple managerial changes at one of the most successful and smoothly run clubs in Europe does bode well for Kornmayer's quality. And while player praise should always be taken with a pinch of salt in matters such as these, Thomas Müller credited Kornmayer with turning him "from a slow to a fast snail", so that's pretty good. Also, he's an absolute dead ringer for Klopp himself when wearing glasses.
Fans will hope that this appointment is the boon for the club's dismal injury record this year and that the appointment will help the players adapt to their manager's physically demanding style of play. At any rate, a Champion's League level fitness coach is a good step for Liverpool towards reclaiming their status as a Champion's League level club.