Arsene Wenger can add Jurgen Klopp’s name to his list of admirers.
The Liverpool boss declared his admiration for Wenger’s longevity as the Frenchman approaches his 20th anniversary as Arsenal boss.
To achieve that, in a “really intensive” league, is a remarkable feat, according to Klopp.
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“He [Wenger] had always my biggest respect but now it’s a little bit bigger since I’m here,” Klopp said, reported the Independent. “That’s really a brilliant job he’s done - 19-and-a-half years.
“He’s a high-quality manager, one of the best in the world for sure. This long period, it’s really rare that you can do this but he did.
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“He’s a football maniac, in the best (sense of the word). It was always a challenge to play against him and again a challenge that I’m looking forward to.”
Klopp was speaking ahead of his side’s game against table-toppers Arsenal at Anfield on Wednesday evening.
Three months into the German’s reign in English football, Klopp has finally realised that the Premier League is incredibly physical.
“My respect goes up day by day because it’s really intensive to work in the Premier League, especially in a team with international matches (for their players) too.”
Klopp’s ‘Gegenpressing’ system - which requires his players to press high up the field in a bid to regain possession swiftly - has been blamed as the cause for Liverpool’s injury crisis.
Phillipe Coutinho, Dejan Lovren, Martin Skrtel, Daniel Sturridge and Jordan Rossiter are all nursing hamstring injuries and will miss the Arsenal clash. Jordon Ibe, who suffered a hamstring injury in the Capital One Cup fixture against Stoke on January 5, is expected to return.
New signing Steven Caulker, who joined on loan from QPR until the end of the season, is available despite only joining the Reds on Tuesday.
Klopp also welcomes back Mamadou Sakho (knee) and Kolo Toure (cramp) from injury.
Is Wenger's 20-year spell at Arsenal one of the Premier League's greatest successes?