Jurgen Klopp was persuaded to reject Manchester United’s overtures by this wife, two years before he accepted the challenge of rebuilding Liverpool and guiding them back to the summit of English football.
With Sir Alex Ferguson stepping down at the end of the 2012/13 season, executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward identified Pep Gaurdiola and Klopp as his two primary targets to take over from the legendary Scot.
Guardiola, however, already had his heart set on taking over at Bayern Munich, so Woodward turned his attentions to Klopp whose reputation was on the rise after winning two Bundesliga titles with Borussia Dortmund and taking them to a Champions League final.
Klopp was given a tour of Old Trafford by Woodward who rolled out the red carpet for the charismatic German and his wife Ulla who convinced her husband to remain at Dortmund, according to former Liverpool captain Phil Thompson.
‘I interviewed Klopp for Sky, and I asked if he and Liverpool were created for each other. He looked at me and asked ‘Why?’,’ the Liverpool legend told TV2 in Norway.
‘Then Klopp told me he could have taken over Manchester United, but his wife said it wasn’t right.
‘When Liverpool arrived, his wife said it was right. There is something strange there. It is as if he’s created for Liverpool.’
Klopp and Dortmund eventually parted ways at the end of the 2014/15 campaign six months before he moved to Anfield following the sacking of Brendan Rodgers.
Liverpool are now firmly back on their perch after adding the Premier League title to last season’s Champions League triumph. The Reds have swept all before them this term and enjoyed their coronation on Thursday night following Manchester City’s defeat at Chelsea.
Whether Klopp can mastermind back-to-back title wins remains to be seen, but the 53-year-old has outlined his intention to remain on Merseyside for many years to come.
When told fans are keen for him to sign a lifetime contract with Liverpool, Klopp told Sky Sports: ‘Well a present I can make to our supporters is that I don’t sign a lifetime contract because there will be a time when they don’t want to see me anymore.
‘But we still have good memories together, so that’s already a promise I won’t sign a lifetime contract. But I will be here for a while.’
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