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MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - Thursday, December 22, 2022: Manchester City's manager Josep 'Pep' Guardiola (R) and Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp during the Football League Cup 4th Round match between Manchester City FC and Liverpool FC at the City of Manchester Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Man City poach ex-Liverpool figure who helped lead Newcastle’s rise

Just 14 months after leaving Liverpool for Newcastle, influential analyst Mark Leyland is now taking up a role with Premier League rivals Man City.

It was a low-key appointment towards the start of Eddie Howe’s reign at St James’ Park, but it is seen as one that helped lead Newcastle up the table.

In appointing Leyland as first-team coach analyst last December, the Magpies also deprived Liverpool of their long-serving post-match analyst.

The Englishman, who previously worked with Howe at Burnley, had been on Merseyside for eight-and-a-half years, and Jurgen Klopp described him as “incredibly important.”

On his switch to the north-east, Klopp hailed Leyland as the “top guy” in terms of “post-match analysis and the individual work he did with the players.”

Now, though, the Mail report that he has swapped Newcastle for Man City, beginning his role with the City Football Group at the end of the season.

Leyland will not only work with Man City but also their sister-clubs including Melbourne City, Girona, New York City FC, Palermo and Troyes.

It marks another step up in his career, but serves as a major blow to Newcastle in the same way it did to Liverpool at the end of 2021.

During his time at Anfield, Leyland worked closely with Klopp’s assistant Peter Krawietz in analysing in-game situations to present to the manager and individual players.

Last term, Howe praised him as “a huge part in what we’ve done this season,” adding: “We love him to bits and he’s been an integral part of our team.”

The impact it will have on Newcastle remains to be seen, but the move away from Liverpool will have been a big blow – with the timing of his exit coinciding with the trend of slow starts from Klopp’s side.