Ranking all 25 signings Jurgen Klopp has made as Liverpool manager
A lot has changed under Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool, thanks in no small part to a number of astute signings he has been able to make.
Not all of them have worked out, of course, so we’ve ranked the 25 signings Klopp has made since taking over as Reds boss in October 2015.
We’ve not included loanees (sorry, Ozan Kabak) or young players who were not intended to go straight into the first team, so that rules out the likes of Kamil Grabara, Ki-Jana Hoever and Harvey Elliott.
25. Loris Karius
You might think this is a bit harsh, but Dominic Solanke didn’t lose Liverpool a Champions League final, did he?
24. Ben Davies
He’s never going to play for the club, is he?
23. Alex Manninger
Not making a single appearance for Liverpool has actually helped Manninger, here.
22. Steven Caulker
We’re still not sure why this happened. Signing Caulker and playing him up front was quite fun at least.
21. Dominic Solanke
Nor are we sure why Liverpool really bothered with this. But still, one goal, an England cap and around £15million profit probably made it worth it.
20. Marko Grujic
Klopp’s very first signing, Grujic has only appeared 14 times for Liverpool’s first team but has shown his potential in loan spells at Cardiff City and Hertha Berlin.
“I’ve been at Hertha for 22 years. This isn’t meant as an insult to anyone else, but Marko is by far the best midfielder I’ve seen in my time at the club,” Hertha manager Pal Dardai said in December 2018 after Grujic scored the only goal in a win over Frankfurt.
Adrian arrived at Anfield in 2019 to provide back-up for Alisson and has played far more than anticipated in his debut season.
The goalkeeper was the hero in the UEFA Super Cup win over Chelsea, but his mistakes did cost Liverpool their place in the FA Cup and the Champions League in 2019-20, while he was between the sticks when the Reds lost 7-2 at Aston Villa.
He’s since fallen behind the promising Caoimhin Kelleher in the pecking order.
18. Ragnar Klavan
A cheap, experienced squad player who described joining Liverpool as “like winning the lottery” and endeared himself to supporters with his steady if unspectacular displays.
Upon his departure for Cagliari, James Pearce wrote in the Liverpool Echo: “Klavan will take his place alongside the likes of Gary McAllister, Djimi Traore and Igor Biscan on Liverpool’s list of cult heroes.”
17. Takumi Minamino
The Japan international has failed to establish himself in Liverpool’s best XI, which resulted in him being loaned out to Southampton for the second half of the 2020-21 campaign.
He’s become a pretty handy player upon his return, making plenty of contributions as a squad player to keep the dream of a historic quadruple alive in 2021-22. A really handy player to have for those League Cup and FA Cup excursions.
16. Konstantinos Tsimikas
Liverpool’s first signing as Premier League champions, the former Olympiakos left-back was supposed to lighten the load on Andy Robertson’s shoulders, but he barely played in his debut campaign.
Minutes have been much more forthcoming in 2021-22, and he’s proving a more than capable back-up left-back when called upon. By all accounts Tsimikas is a much-loved member of the dressing room, too.
15. Xherdan Shaqiri
Shaqiri has been a bit-part player since joining Liverpool in a £
Liverpool even made most of their money back when he was sold to Lyon last summer.
𝗬𝗘𝗦, 𝗦𝗛𝗔𝗤 🙌
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) January 16, 2021
14. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain
People poured scorn on Oxlade-Chamberlain when he joined Liverpool, with the midfielder having previously declared his admiration of Steven Gerrard.
The former Arsenal man took a while to get to grips with life at Anfield, only to explode into form and suddenly appear the ideal Jurgen Klopp player – before a serious knee ligament injury banished him to the periphery.
He’s since recovered to play a role on the fringes, but he’s never quite recovered his best form to get a regular runout. It’s difficult not to look back at that goal against Manchester City and wonder what might’ve been.
13. Naby Keita
Plenty of hype surrounded Keita’s big-money transfer from RB Leipzig, especially given the Reds had to wait 12 months before he arrived, but his Liverpool career has blown hot and cold so far.
The midfielder has shown flashes of brilliance and was improving before an untimely injury ended his debut campaign prematurely, and ever since then there’s been plenty more frustrations. Still, when fit, he tends to be a dependable cog in midfield.
12. Ibrahima Konate
The 22-year-old centre-back has barely put a foot wrong in his debut season at Anfield, but he’s failed to work his way into Klopp’s favourite first-choice XI – which says more about Joel Matip’s exceptional form than it does about the Frenchman.
You imagine he’ll be an important player for years to come, and he was a necessary addition after the defensive injuries that wrecked the Reds’ 2020-21 campaign.
The kind of squad addition that seems to have taken Liverpool up another level in terms of competing with Manchester City for depth.
11. Thiago Alcantara
During Thiago’s stop-start debut season on Merseyside, there were some uncharitable comparisons to Juan Sebastian Veron at Manchester United. Liverpool’s form dovetailed at the same time as the Spaniard started to regularly start at the beginning of 2021.
A treble-winner in his final season with Bayern Munich, he probably didn’t envisage his first year in Merseyside going quite like that.
A knock in the warm-up at Wembley denied him a place in his first final for Liverpool – the Carabao Cup victory over Chelsea – and there have been more niggles in year two, but when he’s fit he’s proven to be a Rolls Royce in midfield.
Just one pass and everyone is gone🥺👌
— Kelvin Owusu Ansah (@KelOwusu) March 17, 2022
10. Luis Diaz
You might say it’s pretty premature to stick Luis Diaz ahead of some exceptional players and straight into the top 10. Especially when he’s made just 11 appearances, notching two goals.
But just watch him. The Colombian looks the business. We could look very silly when we look back on this list in a year or two, but we doubt it – Diaz looks seriously special. They’ve only gone and done it again.
9. Diogo Jota
Liverpool’s best attacker behind Salah since arriving from Wolves, the Portugal international has slotted in seamlessly.
31 goals in 67 appearances is a more than respectable return. Few expected him to be quite this good.
8. Georginio Wijnaldum
The whole point of Georginio Winjaldum – his vibe, if you will – is that was underrated. So we’re afraid he’s not allowed any higher than this.
Though it must be said that Liverpool have missed him less than they might have expected, and he’s failed to make much of an impact at PSG.
7. Joel Matip
We initially wrote this list in February 2019, noting on Matip: “He’s alright, isn’t he? Fine, in fact. The sort of player you see constantly written off on social media but struggle to remember anything – either good or bad – he has ever done which caught your eye.”
It was around that time the centre-back was given the chance to cement his place in Liverpool’s starting XI. Given he ended the season a Champions League winner, nobody is writing him off on social media anymore.
And he’s only got better since then. Matip is the reigning Premier League Player of the Month and he absolutely deserves it.
Fabinho joined Liverpool from Monaco in 2018 and after a slow start, he has become one of the best defensive midfielders in the world. As solid as he is when deputising in defence, look at the chaos that ensues when you take him out of that midfield.
5. Alisson Becker
As we’ve seen with Alex Manninger, not being Loris Karius really helps on this list. Being a genuinely excellent goalkeeper also helps.
4. Sadio Mane
He scores goals, he copies his team-mate’s celebrations, he just seems like a really good laugh.
What a bloody player.
3. Andy Robertson
Okay, we’re taking into account value for money here, but it really is worth reminding yourself that Robertson – now one of the best players in the world in his position – cost £8million. £8million! In 2017!
Who knew that the bloke that was relegated with Hull City would turn out to be such a world-beater.
2. Virgil van Dijk
“He’s our centre-half, he’s our number four, watch him defend and we watch him score. He can pass the ball, calm as you like, he’s Virgil van Dijk, he’s Virgil van Dijk.”
Good things come to those who wait, as Liverpool proved by biding their time to sign Van Dijk after an initial slap on the wrist from Southampton.
1. Mohamed Salah
Klopp reportedly wanted to sign Julian Brandt instead only to be convinced Salah was the man to spearhead Liverpool’s attack by sporting director Michael Edwards.
Just look at the Thierry Henry-esque stats: 238 appearances, 153 goals, 57 assists.
Liverpool’s best player of the glorious Klopp era. Pay him whatever he wants, Jurgen.