Klopp, Guardiola, Simeone: Who is Europe's longest-serving manager?

  • Kobe Tong
Liverpool's Klopp celebrates.

Jurgen Klopp is set to spend two more years than anticipated at Liverpool.

It had been quietly assumed by Kopites that the legendary coach would wave goodbye to Anfield in 2024 with the man himself dropping several hints that he wouldn’t be signing another contract at the club.

However, Klopp has changed his mind this week in a decision that has brought joy to Liverpool fans across the world, confirming his desire to stay on Merseyside until the distant days of 2026.

Klopp extends his Liverpool stay

With both his family and coaching staff on board with the decision, the 54-year-old confirmed the extension in a move that could see him spend more than a decade in the Anfield dugout.

And frankly, Liverpool fans aren’t complaining because the upward trajectory that the club has been on since Klopp took over in October 2015 has been extraordinary to watch.

Klopp has delivered Premier League, Champions League, UEFA Super Cup, FIFA Club World Cup and Carabao Cup glory across a staggering seven-year stint that could get even better this season.

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Thiago was born in which country?

That’s because the German mastermind could well secure the first quadruple ever attained in English football history with Liverpool competing to win the three major honours still available to them.

But even if Klopp can ‘only’ deliver one or two more trophies at Anfield this season, it would still represent another wildly successful season in what is proving to be a tenure for the ages.

Jurgen Klopp signs NEW DEAL until 2026! (Football Terrace)

Klopp changing the game at Liverpool

After all, the reality of management in the modern men’s game is that coaches don’t tend to occupy their positions for more than a few seasons other than in exceptional circumstances like Klopp’s.

And on the back of Burnley’s shock dismissal of Sean Dyche after 10 years working together, the Liverpool boss now stands alone as the longest-serving manager in the Premier League.

However, the remarkable statistics don’t end there because Transfermarkt widened the net to Europe’s top five leagues this week in light of the news that Klopp was staying for another two years.

Liverpool's Klopp at Anfield.
Soccer Football – Premier League – Liverpool v Brentford – Anfield, Liverpool, Britain – January 16, 2022 Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp reacts REUTERS/Phil Noble EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club /league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

And they discovered that Klopp’s dynastic tenure at Liverpool makes him the third-longest-serving manager across the Premier League, Bundesliga, La Liga, Serie A and Ligue 1 at present.

With six and a half years on Merseyside, only two managers can claim to have held their current position longer than the Liverpool boss with the full top 10 making for fascinating reading.

Longest-serving managers in Europe

So, as Liverpool fans joyfully buckle themselves up for another two years with Klopp in charge, be sure to check out the longest-serving managers in Europe’s top five leagues at the time of writing down below:

10. Ralph Hasenhüttl (Southampton)

Duration: Three years and four months

Hasenhüttl is Southampton boss.
Soccer Football – Premier League – Burnley v Southampton – Turf Moor, Burnley, Britain – April 21, 2022 Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl Action Images via Reuters/Molly Darlington EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club /league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

9. Thomas Frank (Brentford)

Duration: Three years and six months

8. Urs Fischer (Union Berlin)

Duration: Three years and nine months

Fischer managing Union Berlin.
Soccer Football – RB Leipzig v 1. FC Union Berlin – Red Bull Arena, Leipzig, Germany – April 23, 2022 1. FC Union Berlin coach Urs Fischer reacts REUTERS/Annegret Hilse DFL REGULATIONS PROHIBIT ANY USE OF PHOTOGRAPHS AS IMAGE SEQUENCES AND/OR QUASI-VIDEO.

7. Jagoba Arrasate (Osasuna)

Duration: Three years and nine months

6. Pascal Gastien (Clermont)

Duration: Four years and seven months

Gastien coaching Clermont.
Soccer Football – Ligue 1 – OGC Nice v Clermont – Allianz Riviera, Nice, France – February 6, 2022 Clermont coach Pascal Gastien REUTERS/Eric Gaillard

5. Pep Guardiola (Manchester City)

Duration: Five years and nine months

4. Gian Piero Gasperini (Atalanta)

Duration: Five years and ten months

Gasperini as Atalanta boss.
Soccer Football – Europa League – Quarter Final – Second Leg – Atalanta v RB Leipzig – Stadio Atleti Azzurri, Bergamo, Italy – April 14, 2022 Atalanta coach Gian Piero Gasperini REUTERS/Daniele Mascolo

3. Jurgen Klopp (Liverpool)

Duration: Six years and six months

2. Christian Streich (SC Freiburg)

Duration: 10 years and four months

Streich gives orders to Freiburg players.
Soccer Football – DFB Cup – Semi Final – Hamburg SV v SC Freiburg – Volksparkstadion, Hamburg, Germany – April 19, 2022 SC Freiburg coach Christian Streich reacts REUTERS/Cathrin Mueller DFB REGULATIONS PROHIBIT ANY USE OF PHOTOGRAPHS AS IMAGE SEQUENCES AND/OR QUASI-VIDEO.

1. Diego Simeone (Atletico Madrid)

Duration: 10 years and four months

Atletico Madrid boss Simeone.
Soccer Football – Champions League – Quarter Final – Second Leg – Atletico Madrid v Manchester City – Wanda Metropolitano, Madrid, Spain – April 13, 2022 Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone looks dejected after the match REUTERS/Susana Vera

Klopp chasing history

It had to take an exceptionally-long stint to beat Klopp’s record at Anfield and that’s most certainly the case with Streich and Simeone, who have sensationally surpassed the 10-year mark.

And perhaps the craziest observation that you can make is that Streich was only hired six days after Simeone, so clearly there was some magic in the air when it came to appointments in December 2011.

Of course, we have no idea whether or not they will continue to occupy their current posts until 2026, but if they don’t, then it could open the door for Klopp to become Europe’s longest-serving manager.

Remaining on Merseyside until the conclusion of the 2025/26 season would see Klopp having spent almost 11 years at the club, which is almost unheard of in the post-Arsene Wenger and Sir Alex Ferguson era.

Liverpool's Klopp celebrates.
Soccer Football – FA Cup Semi Final – Manchester City v Liverpool – Wembley Stadium, London, Britain – April 16, 2022 Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp celebrates after the match Action Images via Reuters/Carl Recine

But alas, it’s working pretty darn well for Liverpool with Manchester City proving the only other Premier League club to have persisted with the same coach in their dugout for longer than four years.

However, as the saying goes: “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” and it’s fair to say that Liverpool are anything but broken as they steer towards a potential quadruple with Klopp on board until 2026.

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