Interviewing Jurgen Klopp has become a far less enviable task in recent years, especially when early Saturday kick-offs are mentioned.
The Liverpool manager has taken issue with his side’s scheduling repeatedly during the past few seasons, but after a 2-0 win over Sheffield United last week, it wasn’t even him that brought it up.
Instead, Amazon presenter Marcus Buckland made a joke about the upcoming 12:30pm start against Crystal Palace last Saturday, saying it was Klopp’s ‘favourite kick-off time’.
The Reds boss instantly bit at the presenter, saying he was ‘brave’ to make a joke about it, before calling him ‘disrespectful’ and ‘ignorant’.
Buckland isn’t the first to experience Klopp’s fury post-match though; Des Kelly had the most heated of debates with the German in November 2020.
The two famously clashed when Klopp congratulated Kelly for a James Milner injury whilst blaming BT Sport’s (now TNT Sports) scheduling.
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Kelly stood his ground, though, making sure to point out that BT were working within the Premier League’s guidelines, which the clubs vote upon.
Having been deemed to have dealt with the situation well, Kelly was asked what advice he would give to Buckland while speaking to talkSPORT.
“I wouldn’t apologise,” Kelly began. “Klopp said ‘you’re being disrespectful’ Buckland said ‘I didn’t mean it, I apologise’.
“I wouldn’t [apologise] you just explain, you don’t say sorry if you’re having a row with Klopp, you explain why you said it.
“Marcus was being sarcastic, he’s a very serious and professional presenter but he was being sarcastic. It’s not funny for him [Klopp], he sees it as a handicap.”
Liverpool have been handed the early Saturday kick-off a disproportionate number of times since Klopp’s arrival in 2015, being given it directly after international breaks on 15 occasions, nine more than any other team.
So when it was put to Kelly that Klopp may have been trying a Alex Ferguson-style power-play with the media, the presenter was keen to clarify that the ex-Borussia Dortmund manager’s anger isn’t for show.
“No, it genuinely irks him that he has to do the 12:30,” Kelly said. “The broadcaster picks Liverpool because they’re the best box office team that’s available in that slot.
“Sky have their choice and then Liverpool, if they’re available, you’re going to take them, and that drives him crazy.
“The argument is that the Premier League made their own rules and they can change it if they want to, and they have changed it to a certain extent but he still gets the early kick-off, so you’re treading in a minefield.
“He’s competitive and he’s got his game face on.”
Source: Talk Sport