Jurgen Klopp has revealed he was once approached to become Manchester United manager, but did not want to leave Borussia Dortmund at the time. The 48-year-old will coach Liverpool against its fierce rival for the first time on Sunday after replacing Brendan Rodgers at the helm in October.
Klopp received multiple offers after leaving Germany but was also in demand while still in charge at Dortmund, and admitted that United was one of the clubs who had expressed an interest “in April” – likely of 2013, when Sir Alex Ferguson was due to retire.
“We spoke,” he told reporters. “We spoke not a lot but, for me, it was a lot. It was a big honor, the whole talk, to be honest.
“There was a time [when United was interested] but I could not leave Dortmund. That is it. You are in April and you are in the middle of the planning for next season. I did not hear about a real offer but, if there was, I could not have done it. I first had to finish the job with Dortmund and then think about other things.
“Maybe that is not the smart way but that is my way. Of course I was loyal to Dortmund. It was the same at Mainz.”
Klopp admitted he sympathizes with the scrutiny being placed on his ex-Bayern Munich counterpart Louis van Gaal amid United’s run of one win in eight matches.
“The pressure Van Gaal is under has an effect on your whole life but, in my case, not on how I handle my team or anything like this,” he stated. “It is always the case if things don’t run the way you want – you have to think about whether to change things or not to change. Both decisions are really important.
“Life is not that nice. I know the whole world is watching football managers and thinking: ‘They are really well paid’, so no one cares about a manager’s feelings.
“It’s like with you [the media] with me when I came here. First it’s ‘yeah!’ Then it’s ‘erm’, then it might be ‘ooh’, so then I am alone on the side and we might have the same situation here.”
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