Football: Klopp asserts control over Liverpool transfer policy

Klopp says he has the last word on signings, although he accepts there are limits to his authority.
Klopp says he has the last word on signings, although he accepts there are limits to his authority.PHOTO: REUTERS

LONDON (AFP) - Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp has insisted he is in charge of transfer policy at Anfield, after sacked predecessor Brendan Rodgers revealed players were forced upon him.

Last weekend, Rogers gave an interview in which he said Mario Balotelli, now on loan at AC Milan after a poor debut season on Merseyside, was an example of a signing over whom he had no control.

Liverpool's transfer committee, comprising the manager, representatives of the scouting department and senior management staff, has been widely criticised after several poor signings.

But Klopp was adamant he had the last word on signings, although he accepted there were limits to his authority.

"If I say, for example, we take Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who is 35, and we would have to pay £100 million (S$200 million) then maybe I should ask before I sign him," Klopp said Tuesday.

"But it is as it is when I said on the first day I came here; it is like I used to work.

"Sometimes my staff and myself have an idea with a player we know or heard about and we collect some information about this.

"If I don't want the player to come here he will not come and if the player I want does not fit our budget then he will not come too. That is absolutely normal."

Klopp has, however, shown faith in his existing squad by giving goalkeeper Simon Mignolet a new long-term contract.

The Belgium international has come under fire for some high-profile mistakes this season, but Klopp has insisted he has full confidence in his keeper.

"We would not have offered him a contract if we had the same thinking (as his critics) - a lot of people who speak about this situation always talk about new goalkeepers," said Klopp.

"But when I came here I heard nothing negative about Simon with all the people I spoke to. There was nothing to criticise," the German added.

"There have been a lot of games since I have been here and he has been involved in one or the other goal we have conceded - as is normal with goalkeepers - but we thought about the package and Simon Mignolet is perfect.

"He is a smart guy, young enough to develop in the things he has to develop and he gives the whole team a good feeling when he is in the starting line-up.

"The result was we were sure we wanted to work with him for the next few years. We are satisfied with this position."