A personal crisis, a falling-out with Jürgen Klopp, or a slowly building case of burnout. Those seemed the only likely, reasonable options when word broke that assistant manager Zeljko Buvac would be departing Liverpool indefinitely but that the club wouldn’t rule out his eventual return as Klopp’s right-hand man.
Now, though, the Bosnian newspaper that broke the news of Klopp and Buvac originally joining Liverpool in 2015 are claiming that there could be another reason playing a role—namely that Buvac is soon to be named Arsenal’s next manager and has prioritised a short time off from football before taking on his next job.
It’s at least a little strange, the idea seeming proposition that he’s both burnt out enough to need to take a break and that he’s going to be replacing Arsene Wenger at Arsenal, a move that if one accepts the basic premise could mean he wouldn’t have a chance for a break following the end of the current season.
Still, given it’s a local source—and one that correctly called Klopp and Buvac to Liverpool in the first place—it can’t be ruled out entirely. And while Liverpool fans might wonder about the timing of his departure if it proves true, few could quibble with the switch—if it does come—from assistant manager to manager.
Of Arsenal, no less, for whom Buvac would represent a very outside the box—if also seemingly highly qualified—selection. Other names linked with them in recent weeks have included Carlo Ancelotti, Patrick Vieira, Luis Enrique, and the manager Klopp and Buvac replaced at Anfield, Brendan Rodgers.