Jurgen Klopp has explained the appointment of Andreas Schlumberger as Liverpool’s new head of recovery and performance, having worked with him at Dortmund.
Schlumberger arrived at the end of 2020 following a spell with Schalke in his native Germany, and takes up a newly established role with the Reds.
The 54-year-old effectively replaces former medical rehabilitation and performance manager Philipp Jacobsen, who is currently on gardening leave, and will be essential to the long-term fitness of Klopp’s squad.
Not a response to the immediate injury issues of 2020/21, Schlumberger’s appointment is with an eye on the future, in avoiding injury, speeding up recovery and maximising performance.
And the German comes with a strong recommendation from the manager, with Klopp having worked with Schlumberger during his time in charge of Dortmund, and speaking to reporters he explained it was part of the plan to “bring the best people together” at Liverpool.
“If you would ask people in Germany, in this area – rehab, performance, recovery – he’s No. 1 in Germany,” Klopp said.
“I’ve known him for years, we studied at the same university, so I’ve followed his way all the way through.
“Then we worked together for a few years at Dortmund, he went to Bayern, worked for Gladbach, worked for Schalke, worked before that for Nurnberg and for the German FA.
“So all that stuff. The CV is just incredible, absolutely incredible.
“Recovery, rehab, performance is always an area where medicine and science is just…we are not ‘there’ yet.
“That’s normal. Twenty years ago it was a catastrophe compared to today, in the moment we are in a really good place but it’s not finished, the development is not finished, the knowledge is not finished.
“My understanding is how can you develop in these areas is you bring the best people together, discuss about different cases and make a common decision and go from there.
“That’s why I thought it makes absolute sense to bring him in. It’s nothing to do really with me personally. Yes, we know each other, but it’s nothing to do with that.
“It’s for me a chance for the club, to bring in an outstanding person with an incredible knowledge about some very important things in football, and that’s why he’s here.”