Jurgen Klopp, Michael Edwards and the other key men driving Liverpool transfer policy this summer under FSG

Exploring who makes the decisions at Liverpool

Jurgen Klopp, Michael Edwards and the other key men driving Liverpool transfer policy this summer under FSG

Exploring who makes the decisions at Liverpool

05 June 2018 Tuesday 17:23
Jurgen Klopp, Michael Edwards and the other key men driving Liverpool transfer policy this summer under FSG

Jurgen Klopp

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp in his office at Melwood

Let's start with the obvious one, eh?

Klopp's management style is not like that of Alex Ferguson or Arsene Wenger, who liked control of just about every aspect of their clubs.

Instead, he is happy to delegate and to listen to the opinion of those around him, be they coaching staff, players, scouts or, on rare occasions, journalists.

Still, he plays a key role in Liverpool's recruitment strategy. It is he who identifies the areas he wishes to improve upon, and his opinion on a player is the most important.

Crucially, too, he is one of Liverpool's big selling points when speaking to potential new recruits. The chance to work under Klopp is a big attraction.

Michael Edwards

Michael Edwards, sporting director of Liverpool

Appointed as Liverpool's first ever sporting director in November 2016, 38-year-old Edwards shuns the limelight, preferring to do his business behind the scenes at Anfield.

Edwards is a former professional, though his playing career never made it further than Peterborough's reserves, who moved into the scouting side of the game with Portsmouth in 2003, having earned a degree in business management and informatics at the University of Sheffield.

At Pompey he was taken on as an analyst, working with manager Harry Redknapp. Edwards fulfilled the role of ProZone analyst at Fratton Park.

He moved to Tottenham in 2009, working primarily as an opposition analyst, but followed Damien Comolli to Liverpool two years later.

He managed the analysis side for successive managers from Kenny Dalglish through Brendan Rodgers and now Klopp.

His relationship with Rodgers was known to be somewhat strained, but Klopp speaks highly of him and the pair are in daily contact.

Edwards' job is to lead the club in terms of player identification and recruitment, liaising with the coaching team while negotiating with agents, clubs and chairmen and overseeing the club's vast scouting network.

He, in short, takes the lead on transfers, with the business side of the club left to Peter Moore, the chief executive.

Mike Gordon

As president of Fenway Sports Group, Gordon acts as the bridge between Liverpool's key UK and American figures. He is their most visible presence within the club.

Tom Werner and Mike Gordon during a training session at Melwood

He is the club's second largest shareholder and the most hands-on of FSG in terms of running the club. Gordon was a key figure in the signing of Virgil van Dijk, smoothing over relations with Southampton after the troubles of the summer.

He was central in the hiring of Klopp as manager, and the pair continues to share a good working relationship.

Gordon, who divides his time between Liverpool and Boston, grew up in Milwaukee and enjoyed a hugely successful career in finance prior to getting involved with Henry and Werner.

Mike Gordon of FSG

Gordon was installed on the Liverpool's board of directors when FSG bought the club and since 2012, when he increased his stake in FSG, he has spent more and more of his time on this side of the Atlantic.

“Mike is well known among professional investors as being one of the brightest financial minds in the country,” Henry has said. His role at Liverpool reflects the high regard he is held in.

Dave Fallows

Poached from Manchester City following the appointment of Brendan Rodgers in 2012, Fallows is Liverpool's head of scouting and recruitment, responsible for co-ordinating the club's worldwide network of scouts with regards to potential targets.

He works closely with Barry Hunter, the club's chief scout, to attend matches, gather information and compile detailed player reports which are accessed by Edwards, Klopp and others.

Liverpool's chief scout Barry Hunter during his playing days

Speaking in November, Klopp credited Fallows and Hunter with playing key roles in the decision to sign Mo Salah from Roma last summer.

“The scouting department was really behind me, and wanted to do it even earlier so that nobody could jump in!” he said.

“We were sure he can help us. Michael Edwards, Dave Fallows and Barry [Hunter], they were really in my ear and were on it: ‘Come on, come on, Mo Salah, he’s the solution!'”

John Achterberg

A surprise name, perhaps, but it is interesting to note the role Achterberg plays in the scouting and recruitment of goalkeepers at Anfield – as well as their coaching.

The Dutchman is known for having an encyclopedic knowledge of goalkeepers from across the world, and his opinion is both sought and valued by Klopp.

Achterberg is sent to scout players and is heavily involved in video analysis of prospective targets.

With Liverpool looking for a new goalkeeper in the summer, expect him to be involved in the process.

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