Jurgen Klopp expecting Super League backlash from fans when grounds reopen

Carl Markham, PA
·2-min read

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp expects the Super League debacle will mean his side face a backlash from fans when grounds reopen to the public.

The Reds are part of the ‘Big Six’ who wanted to join the breakaway European competition before its spectacular collapse 48 hours after its launch.

Klopp and his players bore the brunt of supporters’ anger prior to their match against Leeds on Monday – when the project was still alive – with a large group with banners gathering outside Elland Road to greet the team coach with “greedy” chants.

Fans hold up a protest banner outside Elland Road
Fans protested outside Elland Road this week (Zac Goodwin/PA)

Despite Klopp pointing out he and his players had nothing to do with the talks and, in fact, came out to a man in opposition, he fears they will continue to be targeted.

“I don’t worry about that, I know it will be like this. Of course, football fans are like this,” he said.

“It is probably not only for Liverpool, but for us I am sure. It is not about fair play in these moments.

“I am pretty sure the supporters of Leeds who were showing up at the stadium and running after us knew as well that we were not involved in it but they didn’t care.

“They just wanted to tell us what they told us. Yes it will be even worse when people are back in the stadiums.”

Despite a fractious week, in which his own relationship with Liverpool owners Fenway Sports Group has been tested after being kept in the dark about the proposals, Klopp insists he has not fallen out of love with football.

“Never with the game. Just with the things around. It’s a big one, I felt it the same way, but I cannot constantly talk about it, think about it,” he added.

“But I never lost my love for the game. We had so many things going on this year and we always tried to get through.

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“I said after the (Leeds) game, if someone asked me ‘What are you missing from this year?’, in terms of what could have happened on top of all the rubbish that happened to you, I would have said ‘The Super League is coming up!’.

“It was a lot but it had nothing to do with the game.

“All the things around it? The game stayed the same. It got better and better and better.”