Tuesday 24 October 2017

Alex Ferguson backs Jurgen Klopp to be a success, but questions Liverpool's transfer committee

Appointment of German 'worrying' for former Manchester United manager, but he is dismissive of Liverpool's 'transfer committee'

Liverpool's new manager Juergen Klopp hides his face with a shirt as he poses for pictures
Liverpool's new manager Juergen Klopp hides his face with a shirt as he poses for pictures

Barney Henderson

Alex Ferguson as backed Jurgen Klopp to do a good job at Liverpool, but said that Anfield's transfer committee could be potentially problematic for the German.

The former Manchester United manager joked that he "didn't like saying it" because it is United's big rivals, Liverpool, but that Klopp is a "good appointment".

Sir Alex Ferguson: Louis van Gaal is right to 'clear the decks and build his own team' at Manchester United

"Strong personality, very strong, very stubborn, determined and his performances, and his career at Dortmund was a stellar rise to the top and I think he'll do very well," Ferguson told ESPN in the US, where he is promoting his new book, Leading.

"I don't like saying that, being Liverpool, because I'm worried about it but, no, he'll do well."

However, he was dismissive about Anfield's transfer committee, which has been described by Ian Ayre, Liverpool's CEO, as a collective approach to buying players that includes the manager, but with "statistical analysis of players across Europe and the rest of the world".

"If you don't trust your manager, why have him there? You've got to trust your coach," Sir Alex said, insisting the manager must be fully in control of transfers.

"Here's the man that should be deciding which kind of player he wants, the type of player, position he wants, his character he wants. It's the manager who knows more than anyone about what he needs as a coach.

"And I think that, there's a lot of this happening in the game now, these 'Moneyball' ideas about looking at statistics of players and bypassing the manager's thoughts, and I think it's wrong."

Klopp has dismissed speculation that he would find it hard to adapt to the transfer committee system.

“It’s a crazy discussion. Not a problem for 10 seconds,” he said.

“I am not an idiot. We only want to discuss very good players at the highest level. I am not a genius. I need the other people to get the information. It’s easy to handle."

Sir Alex also backed Jose Mourinho to find a solution to Chelsea's current woes, which leaves the champions fifth from bottom of the Premier League after eight games.

"For Jose it's probably the first time he has come up against a situation whereby his team are fifth bottom of the league. Unbelievable.. But, great managers find solutions.. He will find a solution," Sir Alex said.

"It may take a few weeks, but you've got to remember he lost his goalkeeper Courtois, who is a fantastic goalkeeper, John Terry is having difficulty adapting to what may be his last season, who knows.

"He played every game last season. The best central defender they've ever had, and he's having a difficult time, so, when the spine of your team is not what it normally is, do you expect to get consistent results? I don't think so.

"But I think, knowing Jose Mourinho, and the one thing I always admired about him and his team – they always play for him. They always try, so the ingredients are correct, he just has to find a solution to get his team back on track – and I think he'll do it."


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