Klopp al­ways dreamed of United role, says men­tor

Manchester Evening News - - SPORT - By CIARAN KELLY ciaran.kelly@trin­i­tymir­ror.com @MENCKelly

JUR­GEN Klopp wanted to man­age Manchester United be­fore even­tu­ally be­ing ap­pointed Liver­pool boss and was even rec­om­mended as Sir Alex Fer­gu­son’s suc­ces­sor, ac­cord­ing to men­tor Eck­hard Krautzun.

The for­mer de­fender spent just 98 days un­der Krautzun’s watch at lowly Mainz be­fore suc­ceed­ing him as man­ager of the Sec­ond Di­vi­sion side in 2001.

Klopp guided rel­e­ga­tion­threat­ened Mainz to the Bun­desliga for the first time in their his­tory three years later be­fore later be­ing snapped up by Borus­sia Dort­mund.

After win­ning two Bun­desliga ti­tles, and lead­ing Dort­mund to the 2013 Champions League fi­nal, Klopp even­tu­ally took over at An­field but it could have been very dif­fer­ent, claims Krautzun.

“It would be his dream to go to Eng­land one day and his favourite club would be [Manchester] United. That’s what he said,” the 76-year-old told The Set Pieces .

Krautzun, who has had 35 spells in man­age­ment in an in­cred­i­bly no­madic ca­reer, met Sir Alex Fer­gu­son on a FA coach­ing course back in the mid-70s at Bisham Abbey.

The pair got on so well that Fer­gu­son in­vited the Ger­man to stay with him and the pair still watch games to­gether all these years later.

And, after Fer­gu­son was left im­pressed by Dort­mund’s land­mark Ger­man Cup win against Bay­ern Mu­nich back in 2012, Krautzun sug­gested Klopp as the per­fect suc­ces­sor.

“I think that’s where his love or re­spect for Jur­gen Klopp grew tremen­dously,” he said.

“I said, ‘Jur­gen Klopp, if he goes abroad, if he goes to Eng­land, his love would be Manchester United.’”

United in­stead ap­pointed David Moyes, who was sacked after 10 months in charge after the champions failed to qual­ify for the Champions League for the first time since 1995.

Jur­gen Klopp

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