Jurgen Klopp speaks on Liverpool’s potential new sporting director: “He’s a smart guy”

Amid reports that Jorg Schmadtke will become Liverpool’s new sporting director, Jurgen Klopp fielded questions on him, saying “he’s a smart guy.”

Earlier in May, Merseyside journalist Dominic King reported that Liverpool were in “advanced talks to make” Schmadtke their new sporting director.

This contradicted reports from Germany that suggested he would only be joining on a short-term basis.

Whatever the true situation, Klopp has been complimentary about his German compatriot in the past and added to the the rumours when he praised him in his pre-Aston Villa press conference.

Commenting on the reports that Schmadtke is set for a move to Merseyside, Klopp said: “If that would happen, it would not be a ‘Jurgen Klopp signing’ or whatever, because we are both German or know each other.

“That would have nothing to do [with it].”

02.10.2011, AWD-Arena, Hannover, GER, 1.FBL, Hannover 96 vs Werder Bremen, im Bild Klaus Allofs (Geschaeftsfuehrer Profifussball Werder Bremen) und Joerg Schmadtke (Sportlicher Leiter von Hannover) .// during the match from GER, 1.FBL, Hannover 96 vs Werder Bremend on 2011/10/02, AWD-Arena, Hannover, Germany. .EXPA Pictures © 2011, PhotoCredit: EXPA/ nph/ Schrader ****** out of GER / CRO / BEL ******

He did have praise for Schmadtke, though.

“I know he’s a good guy, he’s a smart guy, very good in what he did in Germany, very successful character,” Klopp noted.

“His personality is good, humour good, I know that from a few moments next to the pitch. That’s it pretty much. But apart from that, nothing.”

Klopp added: “Jorg Schmadtke, I’ve known for a long, long time. He probably knows me not as long as I know him, because he was a much better player.

“But, we started our second career at a similar moment. I became a coach at Mainz and he became a sporting director at [Alemannia] Aachen, two teams at similar stages.

“That’s where we know each other from, a little bit.”

Liverpool’s manager didn’t confirm any truth in the rumours and name-dropped Borussia Dortmund’s former sporting director, Michael Zorc, in order to highlight that his positive comments don’t mean Schmadtke will join the Reds.

“Do you want to talk now about Michael Zorc?” he asked.

“Similar age group, similar situation, just a bit longer in retirement, I know him much better.

“Whatever you want, no problem – there are some good sporting directors in Germany, you might not believe!”

The Liverpool boss was always unlikely to come out and allude to a deal being in place for Schmadtke, but his comments will only add fuel to the notion that the pair could work well together.