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Rumor Mill: Report Claims Zeljko Buvac May Have Left Liverpool

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A report is claiming Jürgen Klopp’s longtime assistant has left the club.

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This would be quite the blow, albeit there are reasons to be less than 100% certain of the truth.

Duncan Castles of the Daily Record reports that Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp’s longtime assistant Željko Buvač has decided to exit his role at the club, “following a dispute with his long-term colleague”. Castles goes on to claim that his sources have told him Klopp and Buvač “had a big falling out”, with the Bosnian Serb no longer involved in selecting the team, or even making appearances at tactical meetings. “The relationship had broken down, and the players have been told Buvac is gone”, the article adds, with the players said to have been told this news on Sunday.

Klopp and Buvač’s working relationship goes back twenty-six years, with the two being team mates as Mainz 05 players for three seasons, with Buvač eventually returning to the German club as assistant manager when Klopp was promoted to the hot seat. Klopp subsequently took his assistant with him to Borussia Dortmund and then Liverpool, forming a seemingly impenetrable relationship.

Klopp has often referred to Buvač as “the brains”, such is his importance to the tactical ideas of his teams. Former Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool midfielder Nuri Şahin has said that “Željko Buvač is basically Klopp’s twin”, owing to the fact that “both of them see football in exactly the same way”. As such, a big falling out would be a significant surprise, and suggests perhaps a degree of unrest at Melwood.

The good news is that the source of this story is the aforementioned Duncan Castles. If you’ve heard of the Scottish journalist at all, it’s probably for his respectful (to put it kindly) relationship with José Mourinho. As such, he has not historically had a great track record of breaking stories related to Liverpool. It is certainly possible that Castles heard a few things about discontent within the Liverpool coaching staff and made a few leaps of his own to come to this conclusion.

As of writing this, there has been no word from any of the regular Liverpool connected journalists (though perhaps this has changed as you’re reading this) who one would normally expect to break such a story.

Unfortunately, for him to write this with such certainty suggests it’s a possibility that he’s correct. One hopes this gets cleared up imminently, and we can all get back to dreaming of winning it a sixth time.