KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTING —- Jurgen Klopp has shocked English football in general and Liverpool in particular by announcing he will leave Anfield at the end of the season.

The 56-year-old German, who was appointed in October 2015, indicated that he had warned the owners of his decision late last autumn. His senior coaching staff will also leave with him. Klopp said: “I told the club already in November that I’m leaving at the end of the season. I’m running out of energy, that’s the truth.”

His decision mimics his departure from Borussia Dortmund when the managerial magic appeared to be wearing thin.

Klopp proved the perfect appointment at Anfield after several years of boardroom and managerial turbulence, his personality ideally suited to the passion of the fans. Liverpool had won only one trophy in eight years before his arrival revolutionised the Anfield aura.

He led the club to Champions League success in 2019 against Tottenham in Madrid and followed up with victory in the UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup before leading the Reds to their first league title in 30 years in 2019-20.

League leaders

This season they lead the Premier League leaders, have just reached the League Cup Final against Chelsea, are favourites to win the UEFA Europa League and host Norwich in the FA Cup fifth round on Sunday.

Klopp, whose contract had been due to expire in 2026, told a press conference: “I can understand that it’s a shock for a lot of people in this moment, when you hear it for the first time, but obviously I can explain it – or at least try to explain it.

“I love absolutely everything about this club, I love everything about the city, I love everything about our supporters, I love the team, I love the staff. I love everything. But that I still take this decision shows you that I am convinced it is the one I have to take.

“It is that I am, how can I say it, running out of energy. I have no problem now, obviously, I knew it already for longer that I will have to announce it at one point, but I am absolutely fine now. I know that I cannot do the job again and again and again and again.

Mutual respect

“After the years we had together and after all the time we spent together and after all the things we went through together, the respect grew for you, the love grew for you and the least I owe you is the truth – and that is the truth.”

Liverpool won a domestic cup double in the 2021-22 season, and narrowly missed out on a quadruple as they were pipped by Manchester City on the final day of the Premier League season and lost the Champions League final to Real Madrid in Paris.

They won nothing last season but are back in contention for four trophies this term. They beat Fulham on Wednesday to reach the Carabao Cup final.

Klopp added: “It didn’t start then but of course last season was kind of a super-difficult season and there were moments when at other clubs probably the decision would have been: ‘Come on, thank you very much for everything but probably we should split here, or end it here.’ That didn’t happen here, obviously.

‘Massive potential’

“For me it was super, super, super important that I can help to bring this team back on to the rails. It was all I was thinking about.

“When I realised pretty early that happened, it’s a really good team with massive potential and a super age group, super characters and all that, then I could start thinking about myself again and that was the outcome. It is not what I want to [do], it is just what I think is 100pc.”

Assistant managers Pepijn Lijnders and Peter Krawietz, as well as elite development coach Vitor Matos, will leave the club along with Klopp.

Football will absorb the shock and move on to the obvious questions such as who is the next manager for Liverpool and when will Klopp’s love of the game bring him back into management? After all, he was the man the DFB wanted for Germany when Hansi Flick was sacked.