Christian Falk explains how close Liverpool came to appointing Amorim before ‘bitter’ plot twist

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In a parallel universe, we could now be talking about Ruben Amorim rather than Arne Slot as the next head coach of Liverpool.

For most of April, the Sporting Lisbon boss had seemed the leading contender to take over from Jurgen Klopp this summer, but that proposed move ultimately didn’t happen.

Christian Falk has now revealed just how close the Reds’ hierarchy actually came to appointing the 39-year-old, who was on the cusp of getting the job before a sudden plot twist outside his control altered the course of events decisively.

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In his Fact Files for Fabrizio Romano’s Daily Briefing, the German journalist outlined: “During this research, I found out why the transfer of Ruben Amorim (Sporting Lisbon) to Liverpool FC fell through in the end.

“Everything had already been negotiated and the contracts were ready to be signed. Sporting Lisbon would have received a transfer fee of €10m, as had been agreed.

“However, the president of Sporting Lisbon, Francisco Varandas, is said to have changed his mind at the last minute. Suddenly, the president demanded €20m and spontaneously doubled the price. Liverpool did not want to play the game. That was bitter for Amorim, who would have loved to become Jürgen Klopp’s successor.”

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What seems apparent from Falk’s revelation is that Slot wasn’t the initial first choice for the Liverpool hierarchy, who had been on the brink of hiring Amorim before Varandas threw his weight around.

It would’ve been a considerable blow for Michael Edwards and co not to get the 39-year-old through the door, especially when agreements were in place and all parties seemed amenable to the move until the Sporting president moved the goalposts significantly.

LFC chiefs were right not to let themselves be bullied by Varandas, whose 11th-hour change of heart also appears to have scorned Amorim if the manager was ‘bitter’ over how this potentially life-changing career opportunity was taken from him.

The Lisbon club’s president may have actually done more harm than good in the long run. While it’s understandable that he’d want to keep hold of the coach who’s just guided them to a second league title in four years, depriving him of a dream move to Anfield could now have created tension between the pair.

As it is, Liverpool swiftly moved on and concluded a deal for Slot, who’s now confirmed that he’ll be the man to try and fill Klopp’s enormous shoes from next season.

It’ll be some time before we know the consequences of this sliding doors moment, but let’s hope that the Reds will ultimately have no cause for regret.

READ MORE: The evolution of Liverpool’s starting XI under Jurgen Klopp

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