Arne Slot's biggest challenge at Liverpool is obvious as Jürgen Klopp shadow looms

KIRKBY, ENGLAND - JUNE 19: (THE SUN OUT, THE SUN ON SUNDAY OUT) Arne Slot new first team manager of Liverpool Football Club at AXA Training Centre on June 19, 2024 in Kirkby, England.
-Credit: (Image: Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Liverpool will have rarely faced as tumultuous a summer as the one which it will endure in 2024. There are so many key positions at the club which are changing hands that it feels there will inevitably be an impact on the success of the team, even if only a short-term one.

Off the field, FSG has essentially ‘got the band back together.’ It rehired Michael Edwards and Julian Ward who were previously at the club, with the former appointing Richard Hughes to his old role of sporting director.

Clearly the most seismic change has occurred in the dugout though, with Arne Slot replacing Jürgen Klopp. The German made Liverpool champions of everywhere, later adding three domestic cups to his silverware haul. While replicating this success will be hard enough for Slot, attempting to do so isn’t necessarily his biggest challenge. There are two other factors which will come into play far sooner than when trophies start being handed out next year.

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Liverpool supporters are known for backing the club’s manager to the hilt, deifying them once success has been attained. But they also know when the man in the hotseat isn’t right for their beloved Reds.

The obvious example is Roy Hodgson. He only lasted about half a season, with his combination of poor results, ugly football and repeatedly saying the wrong thing making it impossible for the Liverpool fanbase to take him to its collective heart.

While nowhere near as bad, things soon headed south for Brendan Rodgers during his tenure too. He had carried the Reds to their best Premier League title challenge in 2013/14, but his side was losing 6-1 at Stoke by the end of the following season. He had to go.

Supporters will undoubtedly back Slot initially. Klopp memorably told them they had to, for one thing. But pressure will also be there from day one. A slow start would inevitably leave the Reds off the title pace, such is the standard at the top of the division, and it would leave fans questioning if the club has appointed the right man.

The style of play will also come under immediate scrutiny. Slot has mentioned his admiration for Pep Guardiola on more than one occasion, so it will be fascinating to see if Liverpool approach games in the same manner as Manchester City. As impressive as the Cityzens often are, their football can be somewhat dull, their matches lacking the spark and excitement that Klopp’s Reds delivered at their best.

We’ll know in time if Slot is destined to win trophies with Liverpool. Whether he can win over the fanbase will start to become evident as soon as his Reds side takes to the field and reveal his chosen brand of football.