Jason McAteer has said on beIN Sports that he wouldn’t be surprised if Jurgen Klopp left the club before the end of his contract.
However, McAteer believes that the pressure on Merseyside may be too much for him, and that he may step away before the end of his deal. When asked about it, he said: “No. It wouldn’t surprise me, it wouldn’t surprise me at all [if he leaves]. I just think there’s burnout.
“I’ve been on tour with them before, he can’t move. He can’t go out the hotel, he’s meeting potential partners, he’s going to dinners, they’re putting things on, it’s constant.
“The partnership side of the club, when they come in and they want something, they want to get their name out there, who do they put on the front?
“Out of all the players, first it’s [Mohamed] Salah, then it’s Klopp. Before [Roberto] Firmino, before [Virgil] van Dijk, before [Sadio] Mane, it’s Klopp.”
On the face of it, it looks to be an outlandish claim from McAteer. After all, the Reds are in the midst of a potentially historic season – they could go the whole Premier League campaign unbeaten, and are still in the Champions League as they look to defend their title in that competition. Why would the 52-year-old want to leave as they look to enjoy this huge amount of success?
However, McAteer does make some good points in regards to the amount of effort he puts in. You see it on the sidelines during the match with his manic expressions, but the amount of work that goes on behind the scenes is monumental. The Reds have played an incredible number of games in both Europe and the Premier League over the past two-and-a-half seasons in particular – that doesn’t just take its toll on the players.
Already, he is the third-longest serving manager currently in the top flight, and as McAteer says, he puts in plenty of work in regards to the business side of the club as well. Eddie Howe and Sean Dyche may have been longer with their respective teams, Bournemouth and Burnley, but the commercial demand for them is considerably lower than at Anfield.
As such, he may decide that it is the right time to step away from Liverpool even before his deal comes to an end – Liverpool fans should enjoy him while they can.