Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp confronts journalist over ‘horrible interview’

Joe Williams
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp
Jurgen Klopp looks unhappy during a pre-match press conference.

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp was involved in an awkward exchange with a Dutch journalist over a “horrible interview” with Jordan Henderson.

The England midfielder left Liverpool in the summer to pursue a controversial move to Saudi Arabian side Al-Ettifaq before cutting short his stay in the Middle East to move back to Europe with Ajax in January.

Jurgen Klopp: What a horrible interview that was

Klopp, who could be succeeded by Ruben Amorim in the summer, was addressing the assembled media in a pre-match press conference ahead of the Reds’ Europa League quarter-final match against Serie A side Atalanta.

And the Liverpool chose to give one journalist a particularly hard time about an interview conducted with Henderson over his performance for Ajax.

When spoken to by the Dutch journalist, Klopp responded: “You are not the one who interviewed Jordan Henderson, are you?”

The journalist replied: “No, that was my colleague.”

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Before Klopp then asked: “He a friend of yours? What a horrible interview that was. Do you know anybody who liked it?”

The reporter added: “I spoke to [his colleague] and he regretted a bit the interview, he was a bit too hard. He said it all on television.”

Klopp ended the awkward conversation: “Wow, OK. I take that apology on behalf of Hendo.”

The Liverpool manager was referring to a tense ESPN interview after Ajax’s 2-2 draw against Fortuna Sittard in March with a report asking Henderson if it was his and the Dutch side’s “worst performance” of the season.

An unhappy Henderson replied to the journalist : “No, because we didn’t lose. It’s always worse when you lose a game.”

When probed again whether it was their “worst performance”, a frustrated Henderson bluntly said: “You can call it what you want.”

Jurgen Klopp provides update on key Liverpool trio

In the rest of the pre-match press conference, Klopp did not rule out Diogo Jota, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Alisson Becker being involved against Atalanta.

The Liverpool boss told reporters: “Obviously we didn’t rush it with the boys. That means they did a lot of training by themselves. Diogo and Trent worked as a group since two, three weeks and could do really proper training. It was very good yesterday.

“Stefan is different a little bit because he was out for much longer but is now training with us for longer as well. I think after the long spell he had without playing football it makes sense that we might give him a game in the under-21s and then let’s see how he deals with that.

“That’s not the plan with the other three guys. They are now back in training and now we have to see how we involve them, how we use them. That we need them is clear, but we need them in the best possible shape and we want to give them a kind of rhythm.

“It’s always a challenge to reintegrate the guys but, with the quality they have, obviously it should be a bit easier and we will use them in the next days and weeks. What it means for tomorrow, I didn’t make a decision yet.”

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