Slot will ‘build’ new Liverpool team around four ‘fundamental’ Klopp favourites

Joe Williams
New Liverpool boss Arne Slot
Arne Slot waves to fans after a match.

Arne Slot will look to build his Liverpool team around four of the pillars of Jurgen Klopp’s side when he gets to work, according to reports.

The Dutchman was officially confirmed as the new Reds boss on Monday evening despite widespread reports confirming the appointment weeks ago.

In a departure from tradition, Slot will become the new head coach rather than manager at Liverpool and has reportedly signed a three-year deal.

Liverpool’s exhaustive search – incorporating sophisticated data analysis, character and performance research, market assessment, performance evaluation and various other indicators – identified the 45-year-old as their preferred candidate several weeks ago and his desire to take the job allowed for a swift appointment.

And the Daily Telegraph claim that Slot has identified four players from the current Liverpool squad which he wants to build his team around going forward.

The report claims:

‘Slot not only vowed to build on Klopp’s foundations, he identified young players such as striker Darwin Núñez as critical to moving the team forward.

‘While the Uruguayan has been widely criticised for his rawness in front of goal, Slot noted his extraordinary attributes and name-checked him as one of the many players he is excited to work with.

‘Liverpool are also planning for the future with skipper Virgil van Dijk, star striker Mohamed Salah and Trent Alexander-Arnold fundamental to Slot’s debut campaign. Contract talks with the trio are a priority as the club is determined to retain a healthy balance between experience and youth, believing the squad Klopp has left behind will not need extensive surgery.’

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Former Liverpool midfielder Jan Molby believes Slot will have to accept comparisons to predecessor Klopp until he establishes a winning formula at Anfield.

Molby said: “We (the media and pundits) have a big job haven’t we?

“Every time there is something we can’t keep referring back to ‘Klopp would have done A, B or C’ – but I guess there will be some of that. He’ll just have to override that.”

Molby added: “The first thing you do is you have a little look at the stats and how he compares to how Liverpool like to play.

“Then I’ve had a look at a few games – they beat Ajax 6-0 in a league game – and I liked what I saw. I think he is a very impressive man.

“Klopp had a way of playing and he has modified his heavy metal football over the years. This is almost another step in terms of how modern football is played in terms of the high intensity and high press.

“What are the downfalls? That he has done all his work in Holland so far. That would be the gamble. He now has to transfer that into the Premier League but I can’t see why not.

“He appears to have a big personality, he’s verbally very clever and probably speaks better English than (Manchester United boss) Erik ten Hag.”

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