Jurgen Klopp 'to arrive on Thursday' to sign Liverpool deal as Carlo Ancelotti rules himself out
Former Borussia Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp is expected at Anfield on Thursday as the German edges closer to becoming Brendan Rodgers' successor at Liverpool, while Carlo Ancelotti has ruled himself out of contention.
Klopp is reportedly in advanced talks with Fenway Sports Group president Mike Gordon and Liverpool chief executive Ian Ayre and is planning to fly to England to complete negotiations ahead of his highly anticipated move, the reports said.
"I enjoy my time now but, of course, I want to come back to manage - to work - because it is my passion," the 56-year-old Italian said at a press event in London. "I want to take my time to rest, but next season I am ready."
Jurgen Klopp and Carlo AncelottiReuters
The fiery Klopp, twice a Bundesliga champion with Dortmund, who he also steered to the Champions League final in 2013, has made no secret of his desire to work in England.
The charismatic German forged his reputation by turning 1997 Champions League winners Dortmund, who were relegation candidates under predecessor Thomas Doll, into one of the most exciting brands in world football.
He left the Ruhr valley club in 2015 after seven years to take a break from football after finishing seventh in the Bundesliga.
Known for his wit and exuberance as much as for his high pressing, quick counter-attacking and never-say-die brand of football, Klopp is reportedly willing to curtail his sabbatical to revive Liverpool's fortunes and is on the verge of committing to a three-year contract.
He has also asked to bring former assistants Zeljko Buvac, called the 'brains' behind Dortmund's success, and Peter Krawietz in as part of his coaching staff.
SO... CAN WE START COUNTING THE HOURS, NOW?
Maybe we can. In fact, we've put together a little countdown timer to the moment Klopp arrives to really kick negotiations into high gear:
This assumes that the punctual coach is on an early flight and arrives nice and sharply at the start of the business day on Thursday to finalise the deal.
Sieht den FC Bayern gut gerüstet für die Champions League: Franz BeckenbauerImago
ENDORSEMENT FROM 'DER KAISER'
"He is fantastic. He's one of the best coaches I know in the whole world...," Beckenbauer said.
"Liverpool is also one of the biggest clubs in the world, so Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp is definitely a good combination.
"If Liverpool has the chance to sign Jurgen Klopp, then they should do it," he added.
AND HE'S NOT THE ONLY ONE...
Beckenbauer is the latest in a huge wall of noise lending their support to the potential arrival of Klopp at Liverpool: