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Jurgen Klopp could win the quadruple this season and still not be Liverpool’s best-ever manager

Jurgen Klopp guided Liverpool to a 1-0 victory over Chelsea in the League Cup final on Sunday to keep the club on course to win the quadruple this season.

The result also sparked the usual stream of hyperbole about Klopp and his so-called status as one of the club’s greatest-ever managers.

One of the main issues with debates of this nature is that most people engaging in them think that football started when the Premier League was launched in 1992.

On that basis, does one league title in nine years qualify someone to be described as ‘great’ compared to others from the same era?

Sir Alex Ferguson’s tally of 13 Premier League titles with Manchester United suggests that notion is ridiculous. Pep Guardiola (5), Jose Mourinho (3) and Arsene Wenger (3) also outrank Klopp.

As things stand, Klopp has won as many Premier League titles as Claudio Ranieri and no one is spouting hyperbolic nonsense about the former Leicester City manager.

If we widen the debate to overall trophies – the ones that actually matter for English clubs – Klopp is in the same territory as Gerrard Houllier and Rafael Benitez.

If anything screams ‘good but not great,’ it is that comparison. However, winning more trophies this season would change the dynamic.


Claiming two of three on offer would put Klopp in the same bracket as Sir Kenny Dalglish – a manager who undoubtedly deserves to be called ‘great’.

Guiding Liverpool to the quadruple would put Klopp on par with Bill Shankly in the all-time stakes, particularly considering their respective paths at the club.

Shankly inherited a club languishing in the second tier of English football and turned them into a force again, albeit without gaining success in Europe.

Similarly, Klopp took over a club which had dropped off the pace in English football and got them back into contention for silverware.

However, what he has failed to do at Liverpool is create a dynasty – one where the club dominates the landscape over a significant period.

Ferguson achieved that feat with United, and Bob Paisley did the same with Liverpool between 1974 and 1983.

Paisley won 20 trophies as Liverpool manager including six First Division titles, three European Cups and a UEFA Cup.

Even with a quadruple under his belt – something Liverpool are unlikely to achieve – Klopp would not be the club’s best-ever manager.

Anyone suggesting otherwise clearly isn’t old enough to remember how dominant Liverpool were under Paisley.

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