Brendan Rodgers has revealed that he had Jurgen Klopp, the man who replaced him as Liverpool manager this season, over to his house for a friendly chat when the German first took the job.
“Whatever help he needed going into the job as manager, I was there for that,” Rodgers told BeIN Sports.
The following is a transcript of that chat.
Rodgers: Hello, Jurgen!
Klopp: Hello, Brendan. Thank you so much for inviting me to your home, this is really very kind of you.
Rodgers: My pleasure, Jurgen. My pleasure. Come in and have a seat.
Klopp: Thank you.
Rodgers: So then…
Klopp: So then…why are you doing that with your eyes? Is there something wrong with them?
Rodgers: No, nothing wrong at all. I was just directing your attention to the painting of me on the wall there.
Klopp: Oh right. Yes, I was, uh, trying not to look. Is it customary here to have a nude portrait of yourself in your home?
Rodgers: Customary? No, no. That was a gift from a charity in Swansea that I supported during my time there. It was lovely, but in their version I was fully clothed. I consider myself to be an open book, Jurgen. So I hired a professional to come in and paint the clothes off and add the necessary bits. It’s all very accurate. Proportional.
Klopp: Wow, ok then. Is there maybe another room where we can talk?
Rodgers: Don’t worry, I’ll give you the full tour later. Let’s get down to it, shall we? A proper Liverpool chat!
Klopp: Yes, Liverpool chat. Let’s do it.
Rodgers: Now, I must say that I had a considerably more difficult job than I’ve left you with. So you’re welcome for that. Not only was I tasked with turning the club around and infusing it with character, I also had to be a TV star right off the bat, as well. Carrying a massive club and an entire television documentary all at the same time — quite the challenge. Have you seen Being: Liverpool?
Klopp: I haven’t, actually, but is that it playing on the television right now?
Rodgers: Yes, I keep it playing on a loop to help give my guests the full Brendan Rodgers Experience when they come here. Don’t worry, a copy of it is included in the gift bag you’ll get on the way out.
Klopp: Thank you, Brendan. That’s…very generous.
Rodgers: Of course, of course. Anyway, back to how easy your job here is — I guess you could say that I’ve loosened the lid so you can come in and pop it off and take all the credit hahaha!
Rodgers: Don’t worry! I won’t ask for your winner’s medal if you end up winning a trophy this year. A thank you in the matchday program will suffice.
Klopp: Hahaha right.
Rodgers: Here I’ve written something up that you can use as an outline.
Klopp: Oh my. Brendan…this is 54 pages long.
Rodgers: Yeah, just an outline. Feel free to add your own words of gratitude to it.
Klopp: Well maybe I should get going. My wife is expecting me — she’s away right now, but she would be expecting me if she wasn’t.
Rodgers: Of course. That’s fine. Same time tomorrow then?
Klopp: Oh, uh, I’m busy tomorrow, Brendan. Training. You know how it is.
Rodgers: Right, right. I’ve forgotten already. It’s just me here all day now. Waiting for the phone to ring. Defending my transfer spending to the media. By the way, have Bill Shankly and Bob Paisley spoken to you yet?
Klopp: Brendan, aren’t both of those men dead?
Rodgers: Very much so. They spoke to me, though. I asked Roy Hodgson if they spoke to him when he was Liverpool manager, but he said they didn’t. They probably won’t speak to you either, so don’t worry about it. They know a man who means something to the club when they see him. Forget I said anything. Anyway, I’ll tell you about the character of the tea ladies next time.
Klopp: Uh, OK. Thank you again, Brendan. This was so wonderful of you.
Rodgers: Oh, mention it. Haha get it? Instead of “don’t mention it” I said “mention it.” But seriously, mention this the next time you’re interviewed.
Klopp: Alright…maybe I will.
Rodgers: Christian Benteke is just as good as Robert Lewandowski.
Klopp: What? I don’t…I don’t know about that. I have to go, thank you and goodbye, Brendan.
Rodgers: Sure, sure. Here’s your Brendan Rodgers Experience gift bag, as promised.
Klopp: Thank you.
Rodgers: Remember me.