Manchester Evening News journalist Stuart Brennan has bizarrely accused Jurgen Klopp of copying Pep Guardiola, and attributed our recent success to it…
In his sensation article for the MEN, he accused the Liverpool manager of ‘tearing up his blueprint, dropping his principles, and following the example of Pep Guardiola‘.
Brennan goes on to say that this is the only reason Klopp has found success – suggesting the media cosy up to the Reds because the German is so likeable – ignoring the fact that really we’re just money spenders.
Klopp is then called a hypocrite because three years ago he had a pop at Manchester United for splashing near-£100million on Paul Pogba – and has since made a couple of blockbuster signings.
The man himself even addressed this in an interview from last summer in which he admits that he had to change his thinking in a world where players could be worth such amounts.
“We don’t care what the world around us is thinking, like Manchester United didn’t care what I said,” he told the Daily Mail. “It is only an opinion in that moment. Did I change my opinion? Yes. That is true. But it is better to change your opinion than never have one.”
That being said, the biggest issue I have with what Brennan has written is the fact he’s equated Liverpool’s spending habits to City’s – it simply isn’t the same.
Since 2016, when Pep took charge of City, their net spend is £527m. Liverpool’s is £75m. We’ve earned the right to pay the occasional big sum by developing players, making a profit on them and so forth. We cannot afford to make consistent £50m mistakes – like City have. It is absolutely not the same.
Net spend on transfers since 2016/17 (Pep Guardiola's first season at Man City):
— Spreadex Sports (@SpreadexSport) February 3, 2020
With the Reds, we’ve signed players and sculpted them into the stars they are today. Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Bobby Firmino were not top, top class players when they joined Liverpool.
Even with Virgil van Dijk and Alisson – they weren’t the finished article. We knew we were signing class, but our entire team isn’t like that.
Take a look at our starting full backs; Trent Alexander-Arnold is an Academy graduate and Andy Robertson was picked up for peanuts from a relegated Hull City.
City, however, have spent £160million on their current full backs (via Transfermarkt) – and that’s without mentioning the other players in the back four!
Even if we focus on the squads as a whole, the Citizens have out-spent the Reds in every way possible. Liverpool fans often get criticised for mentioning ‘net spend’, but why should we? It’s quite simple – if I sell my old TV on eBay for £100 and buy a new one for £400, how much have I actually spent?