Jürgen Klopp's ruthless message on Liverpool overhaul could ring true for Arne Slot

(Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)
Jürgen Klopp sent a warning to his players before last summer -Credit:(Photo by Andrew Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Liverpool has just two matches remaining of the Jürgen Klopp era. The Reds travel to Aston Villa on Monday night before Klopp brings the curtain down on his Anfield tenure on the final day against Wolves.

It will be an emotional occasion for Klopp, his players and Liverpool supporters but the club's hierarchy are continuing to work on bringing in his replacement. A deal has been agreed with Feyenoord for Arne Slot but as yet, there has been no confirmation over his appointment.

Slot will arrive as head coach, meaning he will not have complete control over transfer dealings. He will however be involved in identifying targets and certain decision-making, alongside incoming sporting director Richard Hughes.

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Reds duo Joël Matip and Thiago Alcântara are set to leave when their deals expire this summer. Virgil van Dijk, Mohamed Salah and Trent Alexander-Arnold are all out of contract in a year's time and decisions will soon be needed on their futures.

It is unclear how much business Liverpool would be looking to do this summer, given the strict Profit and Sustainability Rules enforced in the Premier League. Any expensive new arrivals may ultimately have to be funded by high-profile departures, with Salah and Luis Díaz among those linked with moves away.

Slot may well have to be ruthless when it comes to letting players go, something Klopp was not afraid of last summer. The German sent a warning to his squad back in April 2023 after a below-par campaign, prior to a busy transfer window.

“We have opportunities to change and we have to change. We cannot just close our eyes and do the same again and again,” Klopp told Sky Sports. "This situation also means the door is miles open for everybody to get into the team because there’s only two or three [players] that have pretty much their spot safe. The boys know that, that’s one thing I've told them."

Klopp allowed skipper Jordan Henderson to go last summer, with Fabinho also completing a move to Saudi Arabia. The Reds boss also blocked any suggestion of sentiment by not offering new deals to Roberto Firmino, Naby Keïta and James Milner among others.

Those departures allowed Klopp to overhaul his midfield with the additions of Alexis Mac Allister, Dominik Szoboszlai, Ryan Gravenberch and Wataru Endō and those decisions proved to be inspired.

Slot is already being linked with new recruits and he may have to follow his predecessor's example, if he feels some of the current crop have no future at Anfield.