Not Alonso! Who the Liverpool players really want to replace Klopp

Stuart Telford
Stuart Telford
  • 15 Mar 2024 17:08 GMT
  • 3 min read
Xabi Alonso, Liverpool, Anfield, 2023/24

Xabi Alonso is the bookies' favourite to succeed Jurgen Klopp as Liverpool manager, but the players would prefer to see Pep Lijnders promoted according to some with inside knowledge of the situation.

Klopp announced in January that he would bring the curtain down on eight glittering seasons at Anfield at the end of the current campaign, and attention has quickly turned to who might replace him.

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Alonso leads a field that also includes Roberto De Zerbi, Ruben Amorim and Julian Nagelsmann, among others, after leading Bayer Leverkusen to the top of the Bundesliga, 10 points clear of 11-time defending champions Bayern Munich.

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But Lijnders, Klopp's current No.2, would be the players' preferred candidate according to Alan Brazil and former Liverpool striker Dean Saunders.

Lijnders lined up?

"I am told the players wouldn't mind the number two, Pep taking over," Brazil said on talkSPORT. "I heard that as well," replied Saunders. "At least he knows what's going on there. It's difficult, who do you give the job to? That club is that big."

Lijnders has been Klopp's assistant since 2018, having previously served under Brendan Rodgers in the same role, with his two Anfield stints sandwiching his lone senior managerial role to date - a four-month spell with NEC in his native Netherlands.

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Whilst purported top target Alonso has other potential suitors, Bayern first among them with Thomas Tuchel exit-bound at the Allianz Arena, Nagelsmann has made it clear who could be available sooner rather than later.

Klopp is expected to succeed him as Germany manager after Euro 2024 this summer, and Nagelsmann has made it clear he is willing to agree terms on his next club job before the tournament kicks off.

"If I have a contract offer before the EUROs that I'm satisfied with and that makes me feel comfortable, then the likelihood of me signing it before the EUROs is high," he said.

Read more about: Premier League, Liverpool

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