Stefan Effenberg says his good friend Jurgen Klopp wants “a team that’s not on the highest level” like Liverpool.
The former Borussia Dortmund manager is the outstanding favourite to succeed Brendan Rodgers, sacked after the 1-1 Merseyside derby draw on Sunday, and it is thought that he will be appointed this week.
“He gave me this answer a couple of weeks ago. He said: ‘I’m ready for a team that’s not on the highest level, to create something, to build something up’. This could be Liverpool, right?” Effenberg told BBC World Service Sport.
And speaking at the Aspire For Sport conference in Berlin he added: “Liverpool is one of the greatest atmospheres. It’s pretty much the same as Dortmund.
“The fans stay with everything behind the club and this is what Jurgen Klopp likes and what he needs.
“So maybe, very soon, we’ll hear something from Jurgen Klopp, to make a decision, maybe, for Liverpool.”
Liverpool chief executive Ian Ayre is liaising closely with the club’s United States-based ownership group – principal owner John W Henry, Reds chairman Tom Werner and FSG president Mike Gordon – over the recruitment process which they hope to have completed before the players return from the international break next week.
Henry had personal involvement in the last appointment, famously being pictured meeting Roberto Martinez for coffee in Miami before the Spaniard withdrew himself from the process, but having opted for a young manager with potential back in 2012 FSG are now inclined to appoint someone who has a proven record.
Klopp won two Bundesliga titles and reached a Champions League final and is seen by many as the ideal fit at Anfield with plenty of parallels being drawn with his spell with Dortmund, restoring the fortunes of a club which had lost its way.
However, despite the clamour for Klopp and his position as the outright favourite Liverpool will keep their options open, although the available three-time Champions League winner Carlo Ancelotti is widely viewed as less of a good match than his German rival.