Jurgen Klopp says he wishes he could have another chance with a former Liverpool striker. The boss believes he had ‘incredible talent.
Jurgen Klopp recently sat down for a Q&A with Mainz 05 – his former club, of course. Klopp spent the majority of his playing career there before becoming manager in 2001.
That proved to be the greatest decision in Mainz’s history. Klopp had them promoted into the Bundesliga for the very first time just three seasons later.
Things have gone well for both Klopp and Mainz ever since. The club are now an established Bundesliga side, with over a decade in the top flight. The boss has gone on to become one of the game’s most successful and revered managers.
It’s been quite a career for Klopp, then, and Mainz used the Q&A to ask an interesting question – if he could work again with one former player, who would it be?
Klopp chose a former Liverpool striker as his answer – though, not one he worked with at Anfield.
Klopp picks striker
“Andriy Voronin,” said Klopp. “If Andriy had known just one day in his life how good he could have been, it would have been absolutely amazing.
“Andriy was an incredible player, an incredible talent.”
Now, any Liverpool fan who remembers Voronin will be quite surprised by this answer. The Ukrainian was pretty awful when at Anfield.
But his real breakthrough came under Klopp with Mainz. His second season under the now-Liverpool boss saw him explode with 20 goals in Bundesliga 2 as the club missed out on promotion on goal difference.
He’d end up shining at Bayer Leverkusen before moving to Liverpool on a free in 2007. Voronin joined at the same time as Fernando Torres, though, and didn’t exactly look good in comparison.
Klopp, though, clearly thinks Voronin had far more in his locker. And after seeing how much he gets out of certain Liverpool players, we’re inclined to believe him.
What might have been?