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Next Liverpool manager latest: Who is in the frame?

Liverpool continue their recruitment process to find a replacement for Jurgen Klopp, as the club’s long-serving head coach prepares to leave Anfield in the summer.

After a decorated tenure with the Reds, identifying the right succession plan will be crucial to the club’s hopes of a smooth transition away from the Klopp era.

But what is the latest on Liverpool’s managerial search? And who is in the frame? We take a look.

Xabi Alonso

Xabi Alonso was installed as the early frontrunner to replace Klopp with the former Liverpool midfielder having worked wonders at Bayer Leverkusen. After inheriting a struggling side last season, the Spaniard led Leverkusen away from the relegation places and to European qualification.

Alonso has built on that momentum during a historic season at the BayArena in 2023/24. Leverkusen have been crowned Bundesliga champions for the first time in their 120-year history, wrapping up the title with five games to spare to end Bayern Munich’s 11-year grip on the division.

Incredibly, Die Werkself are unbeaten in all competitions this season, a run of 45 games. With a DFB-Pokal final and Europa League semi-final to come, a treble is in the sights of Alonso’s impressive side.

However, the 42-year-old will not become Liverpool’s next manager, or Bayern Munich’s, after shunning interest from his former clubs to continue his work with Leverkusen next season.

Ruben Amorim

Ruben Amorim was swiftly linked to Liverpool after the news of Alonso’s re-commitment to Leverkusen, having earned admirers across Europe for his work at Sporting Lisbon. Amorim led the Portuguese side to its first league title in 19 years in 2020/21, as part of a domestic double, to justify the decision to make him the third-most expensive manager ever when appointed from divisional rivals Braga.

An intense brand of football and fluid formation have caught the eye, with Sporting currently top of Portugal’s top flight again and heading to another title, with a seven-point advantage over Lisbon rivals Benfica.

However, interest in Amorim appears to have cooled of late. The 39-year-old held talks with West Ham over the prospect of replacing David Moyes  though looks unlikely to head to the London Stadium.

Arne Slot

Arne Slot has emerged as a new favourite to become Liverpool’s next manager and has held ‘very positive’ initial talks with the Reds. Slot has been named the Eredivisie’s Manager of the Season in consecutive campaigns, leading Feyenoord to the title last season and cup success in 2023/24.

Slot has previously been courted by Leeds, Tottenham and Chelsea, and is believed to have admirers in the Liverpool hierarchy for his approach. Feyenoord lead the Eredivisie for tackles won in the opposition’s final third and his preference for a 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 could offer a smoother transition, with the aforementioned Amorim having favoured a three-man backline at Sporting Lisbon.

The 45-year-old does not have a release clause in his contract at De Kuip and Liverpool would need to agree a compensation package with Feyenoord for his services.

Gary O’Neil

Gary O’Neil has emerged as a shock contender after a fine first season in charge of Wolves. Surprisingly sacked by Bournemouth despite leading the Cherries to safety last season, O’Neil took over Wolves after Julen Lopetegui’s walkout on the eve of the Premier League campaign.

Despite being backed to be among the relegation mix this season, O’Neil has led Wolves comfortably clear of trouble and in contention for a top-half finish. He has brought the best from underperforming assets in Matheus Cunha and Hwang Hee-Chan while coping admirably with an inherited squad decimated by the exits of Ruben Neves, Matheus Nunes and Nathan Collins last summer.

O’Neil is well-known to Liverpool, having begun his coaching career in the club’s academy. He became assistant manager to Barry Lewtas for the Liverpool u-21 side at the start of the 2020/21 season and is a former teammate of Bournemouth chief Richard Hughes, who will become Liverpool’s sporting director in July.

Roberto De Zerbi

Roberto De Zerbi’s revolution at Brighton has placed the Italian in the thoughts of top clubs. The 44-year-old led the Seagulls to a top-six finish and European qualification for the first time last season, before guiding the club into the Europa League’s knockout rounds in 2023/24.

Brighton have not been quite as impressive in his second season, though impress on several metrics, ranking third in the Premier League for average possession, second for pass accuracy, and fifth for shots per game.

Given the continual cycle of selling top talent and unearthing new gems, De Zerbi might feel he has taken Brighton as far as he can this summer. How his fascinating tactical plan adapts to a side with greater resources would be intriguing to watch.

Read – Slot keen on Liverpool job after ‘very positive’ talks

See more – 10 unforgettable Merseyside derby moments

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