We read The Sun on ‘collapse of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool empire’ so you don’t have to…

Editor F365
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp and Mohamed Salah
Jurgen Klopp and Mohamed Salah are involved in a touchline argument.

Writing for The Sun brings tremendous freedom if you want to ham-fistedly type out some utter tosh about Liverpool, safe in the knowledge that no f***er from Liverpool, or who supports Liverpool, is going to read it.

But Mediawatch is neither; we are reading, and we are calling out the absolute bull written by Dave Kidd, fresh from his old man cries at the clouds last week after Antony briefly acted like a pr*ck in the FA Cup semi-final win over Coventry City.

It starts strongly, and by ‘strongly’, we mean exactly how it means to go on: Massively flawed.

IT is the image which will define the collapse of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool empire.

Credit to Kidd, when he likes a line, he sticks with it; his piece last week began with ‘AS an image to symbolise the arrogance, excess and utter crassness of the Premier League, it could not have been more cruel or more perfect’.

Maybe stop trying to make images ‘define’ and ‘symbolise’ things that are not actually real, Dave.

First, the image of Jurgen Klopp and Mo Salah having a little tiff is merely the image that defines this week in the football media. It will be forgotten in a month and cast to the annals of history within a year. Mediawatch expects to be next reminded of this when we absent-mindedly watch Premier League Years in 2029.

👉 Liverpool: Salah touchline threat to Klopp revealed after he ‘slapped’ Reds manager
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Second, his Liverpool empire has not ‘collapsed’; they have already amassed eight more points than last season and have claimed a trophy. By any measure other than ‘how can I claim that Klopp’s Liverpool empire is collapsing for my Tuesday column?’, this has been a much better season than predicted. They were not expected to challenge for the title and they challenged for the title until deep into April.

Klopp should take the lion’s share of the blame for Liverpool’s capitulation because the German has botched his exit.

When he announced his intention to quit the club in January, Liverpool were top of the league having suffered a single – unjust – defeat all season, thanks to a VAR debacle at Tottenham.

While a quadruple was always a long shot, it was not entirely unrealistic.

And a second Premier League title was very much on.

It was pretty unrealistic, Dave. The odds on Liverpool winning the quadruple were around 50/1 and they weren’t even favourites for the Premier League title. It was not ‘very much on’.

You know when it was more ‘on’ if not ‘very much on’? Two months later when Liverpool had only lost one of eight Premier League games since Klopp announced his departure.

So the idea that announcing his exit in January has caused a ‘collapse’ is just a nonsense. It seems far more likely that a team ill-equipped for a title challenge – who had regularly had to rescue points late in games – turned out to be ill-equipped for a title challenge.

As an elite football manager, when you know your time is up, you’re no longer fully effective.

And when you’ve told everyone else that your time is up, your time is up.

So, Klopp’s announcement was always likely to derail Liverpool’s season – especially given how extremely his team, at its best, reflects his own manic personality.

So why didn’t it derail Liverpool’s season? Why did they then strengthen their Premier League title challenge? Why did they then win a trophy? Why – six weeks after Klopp’s announcement – were even The Sun predicting that Liverpool would win the title?

Would Liverpool have enjoyed a more successful season had Klopp quit last summer, when he knew he was no longer in it for the long term, and if Salah had been allowed to leave for lucrative Saudi semi-retirement?

Probably not. Finishing third in the Premier League and winning the Carabao Cup is no disgrace.

Exactly. So has Jurgen Klopp’s empire not actually ‘collapsed’ after all?

But the post-Klopp rebuild could have started a year earlier and without such an avoidable and predictable anti-climax to this season.

So Klopp should have left last summer, leaving Liverpool to likely have another poor season but without creating some quadruple giddiness that then ended in a trophy and a return to the Champions League?

Klopp’s four-year Anfield peak finished in 2022, when another quadruple ended with Liverpool pipped to the title by Manchester City and losing the Champions League final to Real Madrid.

First, it’s truly ludicrous to even talk about ‘another quadruple ended’ as though winning a quadruple has been done by any team ever. That’s not a normal thing to target.

Second, if his ‘peak’ had finished in 2022, why the f*** are you now arguing that his 2024 announcement has somehow cost his team some sweet, sweet quadruple bounty? That makes zero sense.

But that’s not about to stop Kidd:

Had Klopp managed to keep his intentions under wraps and ended up with another title, perhaps even a treble or quadruple, he’d have edged himself up into that highest echelon with Ferguson, Guardiola, Clough, Paisley and Busby.

‘Perhaps even a treble or quadruple’, he writes casually.

So Kidd cannot decide if Klopp should have left last summer and robbed Liverpool of a last, ultimately unsuccessful title challenge, or left this summer after winning everything (which has literally never happened before). All he knows is that he definitely should not have done that thing that he did.

But how do we get back around to Salah?

Klopp got it wrong. And the sight of him squabbling with Salah on the touchline at West Ham is cast-iron proof of that.

Or, and this seems at least a possibility, does it suggest that two very competitive and emotional men got a bit angsty on the touchline for a few seconds?

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