When Liverpool signed Jürgen Klopp back on October 8th of 2015, it was the perfect match of manager and club to lift the Reds back to the pinnacle of English and European football. Five years on and you wouldn’t find anyone willing to argue otherwise.
Not that there was ever any great doubt. Still, even for the many who believed Klopp was the right man for the job, the heights to which Liverpool have ascended have exceeded expectations, and Klopp has already established himself as one of the club’s greats.
“We often reflect on the Bill Shankly era,” reflected recently departed CEO Peter Moore of the impact Klopp has made on the club—and to his standing as one of the storied club’s great managers for winning their sixth European Cup and 19th league title.
“The phrase he used was ‘I was made for Liverpool and Liverpool was made for me,’” Moore continued. “The same could be said of Jurgen. I think he is a Scouser at heart. He understands the values of the club, what it means to the fans, and how important they are.
“Shankly called it The Holy Trinity—managers, players, fans. Jurgen recognises it. There is a psychological bond between manager and fans. We have had lots of that at Liverpool over the decades but the closest example is what Shankly and Jurgen Klopp have done.”
For a club that had come close but failed to win the league for three long decades, any manager that brought number 19 to Merseyside would have been lauded, but clearly Klopp’s connection to the club and the fanbase goes beyond just silverware.
Five years ago, when he first signed, it would have perhaps seemed sacrilege to suggest Klopp would end up the first name mentioned alongside Bill Shankly. Now, it almost seems obvious such has his impact been on and off the pitch over five years in charge.