clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Klopp On Transfers: We Want Players Who Really Want to Join Us

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

Julian Finney/Getty Images

Liverpool hired Jürgen Klopp last fall because of his wide range of on-field accomplishments at Borussia Dortmund. He led his former side to a pair of Bundesliga titles and a Champions League final.

But he also displayed an unwillingness to play second fiddle to Bayern Munich that went beyond wins and losses -- and helped Dortmund compete with the European giants throughout his tenure.

Klopp's determination to build a similar culture at Liverpool -- one where fans get behind the team and players buy into the club -- is already on display this summer in his transfer dealings. Rather than begging top caliber players to come to Anfield, he's focused his attention on those who seem genuinely interested in his rebuilding project.

Sometimes that means making unexpected moves. Just this week, for example, the manager has reportedly spearheaded a surprise pursuit of Newcastle midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum.

"We don't look at the price tag and say anything above €50m is good. We look at who we need and who really wants to join us," Klopp told Die Welt (via ESPN FC). "When we realize that a player doesn't really want it, then we don't fight for him for a long time. The club is one of the biggest in the world, and who does not realize it doesn't fit here."

"There are two options for a good player: Either you join an already successful club and surf the wave, or you join a really big club like Liverpool and say that you want to create something very special," he added.

Already, solid players such as Joel Matip and Sadio Mané have joined the squad after vowing their long-term commitment to Liverpool. Still, Klopp acknowledged the difficult nature of competing with other Premier League clubs for transfers.

"There are only five teams in question in Spain anyway, and maybe seven in Germany," he said. "There are many more here. That's brutal. There is a totally different cut-throat competition in Premier League."

Klopp hopes being at a "special club with a special emotions" can distinguish Liverpool from its competition in the transfer market. It's an idealistic belief but an important part of his rebuilding playbook that he'll lean on as he tries to get the club back on track.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Liverpool Offside Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Liverpool FC news from Liverpool Offside