Jürgen Klopp’s entire playing model is built to rip apart the Champions League. That may sound hyperbolic, but as a UEFA report, highlighted this week, pinpoints: it’s an empirical fact.
From an analytical perspective, Liverpool have coalesced to form the shrewdest attack in Europe.
Each year at the close of the Champions League, UEFA commissions a report that marries the musings of some of the sport’s most famous faces — Fabio Capello, Guus Hiddink et al. — with that of a stats company. The goal: To figure out where the sport is heading, and why certain teams and styles at the highest-point of the game are successful.
Figuring out trends over a three to four year span is the idea, rather than overreacting to a one-season sample size. But what last year’s report highlights is how perfectly constructed Klopp’s side is for knockout football in 2020.
Of course, two finals in two years helps illustrate the point. And if you cast the net a little further back you see Klopp’s bombastic approach — first with Dortmund, then with Liverpool in both European competitions — has engineered for success in the modern game; the manager is still yet to lose a two-legged tie at Anfield, only slipping up in a pair of finals.