English Premiership

Liverpool legend hails 'fantastic' Klopp

2016-05-23 22:54
Jurgen Klopp (TEAMtalk)

Cardiff - Liverpool legend Ian Rush has praised the 'fantastic' work of Jurgen Klopp following his first season at Anfield and still hopes the German coach can lure Mario Goetze to Merseyside.

"I think he's been fantastic, he's been like a breath of fresh air," Rush told AFP when asked about Klopp.

"I love his attitude, he's always smiling, but he's also serious.

"He's been getting energy out of players, because he's got it himself.

"The best quote I have enjoyed from him is to 'go out there and enjoy yourselves', because if you're playing well you enjoy yourself.

"He's getting that bit extra out of players, which others managers wouldn't have done, so I am excited about next season."

At the end of his first season in charge, Klopp steered Liverpool to the Europa League final last week, only to fall to a 3-1 defeat to Sevilla in Basel.

It was Klopp's fifth consecutive defeat in a final as a coach, and his second of the season after also losing the League Cup final against Manchester City.

Klopp's run of five straight final defeats started in the 2013 Champions League final, when ex-club Borussia Dortmund lost 2-1 to Bayern Munich in London, while he also lost consecutive German Cup finals with Dortmund in 2014 and 2015.

Liverpool finished eighth in the Premier League last season and the 54-year-old Rush, Liverpool's all-time top scorer, expects Klopp to face a tougher second campaign.

"It's going to be hard for him next season, it's going to be a big year for him," said Welshman Rush.

"Liverpool aren't in Europe, which you have to look at as a blessing in disguise.

"I think the emphasis will be on how high they can climb in the league and that will only come with a good squad. He (Klopp) will get players to join."

Rush said he would love to see Germany's World Cup winner Gotze, who has been linked to a move away from Bayern Munich, to join Klopp on Merseyside.

However, the 23-year-old poured cold water on any speculation on Monday by telling Bild that he is looking forward to next season at Bayern under new coach Carlo Ancelotti, after Pep Guardiola leaves for Manchester City.

Nevertheless, Rush says he would love to see Gotze play in the red shirt of Liverpool, rather than Bayern, next season.

"I would love to see Mario Gotze at Liverpool, I think Klopp knows what players he wants and he's got to go out there and get them," said Rush.

"(Gotze) is the sort of player we would like to see at Anfield."

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