LIVERPOOL. — Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has insisted that he has the final say on transfers at Anfield – as long as he doesn’t spend £100million on Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
Speaking ahead of the Reds’ FA Cup third round replay against Exeter City at Anfield tonight, the Anfield chief clarified his role in Liverpool’s player recruitment, confirming that no players will be signed if he does not want them.
The Reds have this week been linked with a move for Southampton forward Shane Long, as they looked to boost their options up front.
Asked if he has the final say on transfers, the German said: “Yes. But does anybody have the final say.
“For example, say I wanted to take Zlatan Ibrahimovic and we have to pay £100m plus a big contract at 35 I think I would have to ask first!
“Sometimes my staff and I have an idea about a player, then we collect information and then we have players our scouts bring in and we speak about it.
“If I don’t want a player to come here then he will not come.
“If a player I want doesn’t fit our budget then he will not come to.
“It’s a normal situation.”
Klopp’s comments come after former Anfield boss Brendan Rodgers revealed that Liverpool’s transfer committee had the final say on signings during his spell in charge of the club.
“It was a group decision. It was certainly not something I would have the sole or final say on,” he told Sky Sports’ Goals on Sunday this weekend.
“The model of the club is slightly different. The owners have a way of working, where they want to bring in young players and see them develop.
“You look at the players who have come in and they are 24 and below, and the ones who were above that were free transfers.
“As manager, you will always be the figurehead of the club but there is a recruitment team in place who will look to bring the players in.”
Rodgers also went on to explain how the club formed their short-list of players – and what would happen if they didn’t get their top target.
He said: “You want a player in and there’s a list of players, but if the player you want isn’t on that list, you have to take someone.
“You can’t have no players. If you want a left-back, but the one you want isn’t available, then there is a list of three or four.
“You then have to take the best in that group. It is the model.”
Klopp has, meanwhile, told Liverpool’s youngsters they should put their football education before their bank balance.
Liverpool are currently embroiled in contract stand-offs with the likes of Jerome Sinclair, Jordan Rossiter and Joao Teixeira who are all out of contract in the summer.
Jon Flanagan also has six months left to run on his contract and no extension has so far been agreed.
Liverpool are taking a strong stance on contract renewals with youngsters and Klopp said the players should not prioritise a money-spinning deal ahead of their development.
“As a club you cannot make younger players happy,” said Klopp. “That is not possible. It is not the first job. Like in normal life, if it is not easy for you to be happy then no one can help you.
“But what we are trying to create is a situation where younger players know it is not important to get the highest wages in your life in the first year of your career.
“It is more important to get the real education and that is what we want to try.
“For this you always need a lot of things. I like Jerome he is a real talent and if he wants to stay with us no problem. Absolutely no problem. If not, we cannot force it. — The Mirror.