Former Liverpool, Blackburn Rovers, Aston Villa and Tottenham Hotspur goalkeeper, Brad Friedel, has urged the the Reds’ board to not consider sacking Jurgen Klopp after the the club’s disastrous start to the 2022/23 season.
Speaking to Fair Betting Sites, Friedel warned Liverpool to keep faith in the under-fire German despite the club losing four times in the league and leaving them 15 points behind league-leaders Arsenal.
In a wide-ranging interview covering many of the seven clubs Friedel played for, the former USA international gave Fair Betting Sites his thoughts on Antonio Conte and urged Spurs to keep the world class manager, in order to win silverware.
Klopp Sack Calls Premature
Friedel gave a staunch defence of Klopp and shot down any calls for the former Borussia Dortmund boss to leave Anfield, and it is confident Liverpool can turn their season round.
Friedel told Fair Betting Sites: “I couldn’t even fathom Klopp leaving. I don’t even understand why that is a talking point at this moment in time. Him leaving should not be spoken of, nor do I think there should be any talks at the boardroom level about him leaving.
“I would like to see Jurgen Klopp stay there for a long time. He’s done that good of a job and his teams have been so exciting that I’ve not even given it a thought as a Liverpool supporter and as an ex-player to even think about a replacement.
“Just because they’ve had a difficult start to the season does not mean that you should start looking for a replacement. I would like to see him there for many, many years to come to be honest with you.”
Tottenham Must Keep Conte As ‘Long-Term Project’
Former Tottenham stopper Friedel has been impressed by manager Antonio Conte and hopes the Italian will stay on even if Spurs miss out on top four and silverware.
“I get this question a lot. People say they’re inconsistent, but they keep getting results. Antonio Conte is implementing his style. They’re very much on an outside chance of winning the Premier League. It’s still a big ask to finish in the top four for any of those clubs. With Man United coming up, Chelsea coming up, it’s Liverpool that’s not in the top four at this moment in time. They’re going to come up. I think realistically they should be looking anywhere between one and four, but if they finish fifth or sixth, it doesn’t mean they’ve had an awful season. There’s a lot of competition in this.”
“I think any manager could potentially leave any club at any time. I don’t know necessarily if it comes down to winning silverware or not. For Antonio Conte at Tottenham, I would like to think it’s more of a longer-term project – like the respect I have for Jurgen Klopp. I have the same respect for Antonio Conte. I don’t know Antonio Conte, but I can just see how the players play for him at every club that he’s gone to. For Tottenham’s sake, I hope that’s a long-term plan. If he doesn’t win a trophy this year, I wouldn’t have thought that that’s necessarily going to bring alarm bells, or I’d hope not anyways.”
Kane 100% Focused On Spurs And Won’t Regret City Transfer Saga
Friedel has said former Tottenham team-mate Harry Kane is focused on the club and will not look back with regret over his failed move to Manchester City in 2021.
Friedel said: “Harry does not operate by looking back to the past. Daniel Levy is the one that dictates all the transfers. Players don’t have the power to dictate the transfers. It taught them it doesn’t matter who you are.
“Gareth Bale didn’t do it. Once Harry knew that he was staying, that taught him he’d be all for staying and he’s not gonna look over his shoulder at what other players are doing. That’s not how he works. He’s a great teammate, he’s a great person and one of the best number nines in the world. He’ll try to score as many goals as possible and he’s having a fantastic season so far in that regard and I’m sure he is gonna be looking forward to leading the line for England in the World Cup.”
“The only real way out if Kane does want to in fact leave, is to allow his contract to run down. I’m sure behind the scenes, the board and Daniel Levy are trying to solve this as soon as possible.
“What if they do allow the contract to run down? Then I’m sure they’ll be on the lookout for another number nine. It’d be very difficult to replace someone like Kane. Those would be definitely interesting conversations behind the scenes to be involved in.”
Strikers Like Shearer, Henry Would Score As Many As Haaland At City
Friedel was full of praise for Erling Haaland and his incredible goalsoring start to life in the Premier League, but was quick to point out such legends as Thierry Henry, Alan Shearer and Didier Drogba would also be hitting those numbers in City’s current team.
He said: “There’s a lot of players that remind me of Haaland, like Alan Shearer. There are some remarkable strikers I played against. Ruud van Nistelrooy was remarkable, Shearer was remarkable, Thierry Henry, Didier Drogba and Andy Cole were all remarkable.
“If you put all these guys into this Man City team, they score. They score all the goals that he’s scoring. He is prospering from being in this remarkable team, and he is very good but doesn’t take away the abilities of a lot of other strikers. There are probably 10 to 15 others, Harry Kane included, that would prosper in that side.”
American Owners Can Benefit Premier League And Grow Game Stateside
There are currently 10 of the 20 Premier League clubs either owned or part-owned by Americans and Friedel thinks the money they bring will only benefit the top-flight.
Friedel said: “I think the influx of money is good for the Premier League. I like the fact that it’s American owners because it brings even more notoriety over to the US and we’re still a growing league and a growing country in football.
“I hope the owners purchase the clubs with the knowledge of how important these clubs are to the fans and how much of a religion football is over there because it is different from American sports.
“If they don’t know it is going on, they quickly realize that after the first month or so. I think the influx of capital from the American owners is a great thing for both the Premier League and for the United States.”
Matt Turner Too Good For Arsenal Bench
Friedel has said USA international Matt Turner is ‘too good’ to be sitting on Arsenal’s bench less than a month away from the World Cup.
Friedel said: “Time will tell if it’s the right decision. When you’re in the MLS, this is what I’ll say – it’s hard to turn down a club like Arsenal coming in for you. But when you move and you’re as good as Matt Turner, I’d like to think that you would move and you’re being told that you were gonna be the number one which obviously wasn’t the case at Arsenal.
“Matt’s a heck of a nice guy and a heck of a good goalkeeper. I don’t know what kind of deal they have with Arsenal or what, but I hope if he’s not in the team, or doesn’t look like he’s gonna get near the team, then they would allow him to leave or go on loan. I personally think he’s too good of a goalkeeper to be sitting on the bench.”
Copyright © 2024 Completesports.com All rights reserved. The information contained in Completesports.com may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without the prior written authority of Completesports.com.