MATCHDAY PROGRAMME

PARIS, FRANCE - Saturday, May 28, 2022: Liverpool's elite development coach Vitor Matos (L) and first-team development coach Pepijn Lijnders before the UEFA Champions League Final game between Liverpool FC and Real Madrid CF at the Stade de France. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Explained: Why Pepijn Lijnders is also leaving Liverpool despite manager links

Liverpool CEO Billy Hogan has seemingly ruled Pepijn Lijnders and Vitor Matos out of coaching roles at the club when Jurgen Klopp steps down this summer.

The Reds’ statement on Klopp’s shock departure this morning revealed that, along with the German’s loyal assistant Peter Krawietz, both Lijnders and Matos will also leave their roles at the end of the season.

That is perhaps something of a surprise given Matos’ importance as a link between academy and first team, and the fact that Lijnders has previously been touted for the top job.

However, when asked if there were any attempts to retain the pair, Hogan told reporters: “I think from an overall perspective, the decision that was taken at that time, number one was that Vitor and Pep want to get going in their managerial careers.

“I think that’s something that we understood, and they will go – they’re not going today! – with our support, and anything we can possibly do to help their career going forward we will of course do.

“The team that Jurgen has built is an incredibly strong one, but there is also a huge team around that group that will be here to help in terms of that experience level as well.”

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Monday, October 3, 2022: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp (L), elite development coach Vitor Matos (C) and first-team development coach Pepijn Lijnders (R) during a training session at the AXA Training Centre ahead of the UEFA Champions League Group A matchday 2 game between Liverpool FC and Glasgow Rangers FC. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Klopp himself also had his say on Lijnders and Matos, declaring them fully ready to take on a new challenge elsewhere next season.

He added: “I will take the break, but the other boys are open and ready, let me say it like that. If somebody can say this, it’s me: they are ready.

“The impact the boys had over the years, and especially the impact Pep had in the last few years on the football we played, is second to none, it’s absolutely incredible.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, April 30, 2023: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp (L) and first-team development coach Pepijn Lijnders during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“I know that, I have to be very thankful and grateful to him and I am because he gave me so many new visions and helped me develop over the last years.

“I’m pretty sure I could help him as well, and that’s the idea when you work that closely together.

“So, they will go for it and I will support it from wherever I am and will follow it closely – and enjoy it a lot, because I know there is a lot to expect from the boys.”