Manager of Premier League champions Liverpool Jurgen Klopp has shrugged off new signings by his rival clubs by stating that it won’t guarantee them success in the upcoming season.
Klopp’s side are back in action on Saturday just seven weeks after Jordan Henderson lifted the trophy to mark the culmination of Liverpool’s first title-winning campaign for 30 years when they take on newly promoted Leeds United.
As they powered to the title in record-setting style, Liverpool looked so untouchable that an era of sustained dominance seems eminently possible.
They won 32 of their 38 games to finish 18 points clear of second-placed Manchester City and 33 ahead of both third-placed Manchester United and fourth-placed Chelsea.
The Reds adopted a cautious approach due to the financial fall-out from the coronavirus.
Klopp’s only signing to date is Greece left-back Kostas Tsimikas, but the Reds boss believes the continuity in Liverpool’s squad will serve them well while their overhauled rivals try to gel.
“For some clubs it seems less important how uncertain the future is: those owned by countries, owned by oligarchs, that’s the truth. We’re a different kind of club,” Klopp told the BBC. “We cannot just change it overnight and say, ‘so now we want to behave like Chelsea’. Now they are signing a lot of players. That can be an advantage of course but that means they have to fit together pretty quickly as well.”
“It’s about working together on the training ground. That will probably be an advantage for us.”
On the other hand, City have gone all out in the transfer market. They signed Dutch international Nathan Ake from Bournemouth to finally plug the hole in the heart of his defence left by Vincent Kompany’s departure in 2019. He also brought in along with Spanish winger Ferran Torres from Valencia to revitalise a team that seemed weary towards the end of a frustrating season that petered out with their limp Champions League quarter-final defeat against Lyon.
Across Manchester at Old Trafford, United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has a vibrant young team that finished strongly after the January arrival of Bruno Fernandes.
A full season for Portugal playmaker Fernandes, combined with Solskjaer’s swoop for Ajax midfielder Donny van de Beek, should allow United to narrow the gap to Liverpool.