Liverpool's German manager Jurgen Klopp (L) chats with Liverpool's Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk (R) during a Liverpool team training session at Melwood in Liverpool, north west England on April 8, 2019, on the eve of their UEFA Champions League quarter final first leg football match against Porto. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP)

According to AS, Real Madrid and Barcelona have prioritised the signing of Liverpool duo of Jurgen Klopp and Virgil van Dijk. Both the Spanish giants are keen on appointing Klopp as their next manager, should Zinedine Zidane or Ernesto Valverde fail to meet their current objectives this season. Van Dijk, meanwhile, is a target as well, having been widely regarded as the best defender in the world right now.

In this article, we will discuss how the entire Liverpool team could fall apart, should both Klopp and van Dijk leave Anfield.

Jurgen Klopp: The brains behind the Liverpool storm

Liverpool are almost untouchable this season, being the only club in the Premier League to retain a hundred percent winning record after five games this season. And the Reds didn’t even have to complete a single major signing in the summer transfer window.

It is mainly due to the efficiency of Klopp, who is known for his ability to mould his players into his Gegenpressing scheme. This is exactly why the likes of James Milner, Jordan Henderson and Andrew Robertson have emerged as top-class players.

Indeed, the German has transformed a baffled squadron into world-class individuals, who have already conquered Europe once and are ready to do it again. It is unlikely that the ex-Dortmund coach will leave Anfield this season. But, his potential departure next summer would force Liverpool to start from the bottom once again.

The Reds will be required to go through yet another transitional phase. And this, in turn, will allow the likes of Manchester United, Chelsea and even Arsenal to fix their problems and once again emerge as title favourites.

Besides, it’s also doubtful whether or not the likes of Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah would like to remain at the club, following the departure of Klopp, thus causing the entire team to fall apart.

Virgil van Dijk: The backbone of the Liverpool defence

From attaining the worst defence among the top six clubs in the league to becoming one of the best defensive sides in the league, Liverpool have seen a vast improvement in their defensive department within the past couple of years.

The emergence of Trent Alexander-Arnold and Robertson have undoubtedly played a key role. Not to mention, Alisson, too, has been critical to Liverpool’s rejuvenated defence. But, the credit should mainly be attributed to van Dijk. Since arriving from Southampton, the Dutchman has added another dimension to the backline.

His physical and aerial dominance, coupled with his aggression, is ideally suited to Klopp’s style of play. They are also qualities that have complemented Joel Matip, who is now become a reliable option at the back.

Van Dijk’s departure, therefore, could once again disrupt the stability of the Liverpool backline and the club should try their best in keeping hold of the Dutchman.

Jack O’Brien

A 22 y/o football nerd seeking my way into football writing. I love Irish football and also the Premier League. A huge Arsenal fan! Aside from writing, I like to spend my time fishing and drinking beer.