Sven-Goran Eriksson had heartfelt conversation with Jurgen Klopp moments before Liverpool Legends match


Sven-Goran Eriksson had a heartfelt conversation with Jurgen Klopp before Liverpool Legends took on Ajax Legends at Anfield.

The exhibition match, which features retired former players from both sides, is for charity, with a large proportion of money raised from the proceeds being used to support LFC Foundation education programmes.

And Forever Reds, which provides support to ex-Liverpool players in need of care, especially towards the later stages of their lives, will also receive some of the proceeds from the match.

Former England manager Eriksson is taking charge of a Liverpool side for the first time today.

The 76-year-old revealed in January that has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and has a year left to live ‘in the best case’.

In a subsequent interview with Sky News, he said that his one major footballing regret was not managing Liverpool – the team he and his father both supported – during his career.

The following month, the Reds announced that Eriksson would be given the opportunity of taking charge of the Liverpool Legends team to take on Ajax.

And with his family in attendance at Anfield, the Swede was visibly emotional as ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ played over the PA system pre-match.

He was also applauded onto the field by Liverpool supporters before kick-off, with the Swede then acknowledging the Anfield faithful as he prepared to take charge of the Legends.

Some noise as Sven-Göran Eriksson emerges at Anfield ❤️

The 76-year-old is managing the Liverpool Legends (Gerrard and Torres included) against Ajax this afternoon.#LFC 🔴

— Neil Jones (@neiljonesgoal) March 23, 2024

As part of the announcement that Eriksson would take charge of the Legends side, Liverpool confirmed that he would spend a day at the club’s training facility and meet current first team boss Jurgen Klopp.

Footage posted by the Reds’ social media accounts shows the former Lazio and Manchester City boss speaking to Klopp before the game.

Klopp greeted the former England boss with a hug, before commenting: “What a legend! Nice to meet you.”

Eriksson replied: “Congratulations – you’re doing great.”

The pair then continue the conversation, which is inaudible as the camera moves away. Both men, though, can be seen sporting big smiles. 

“What a legend!”

— Liverpool FC (@LFC) March 23, 2024

Eriksson’s Liverpool XI was packed full of Reds greats, with Steven Gerrard, Fernando Torres, Daniel Agger and Martin Skrtel all in from the start.

Dirk Kuyt, Djibril Cisse and Sami Hyypia, meanwhile, were all on the bench, with rolling substitutions once again being used as per tradition in Liverpool Legends matches.

Ryan Babel and Jari Litmanen have pulled double duty, having represented both clubs in their careers, while Danny Blind, Nwankwo Kanu, Ronald de Boer and Rafael van de Vaart are among those playing for Ajax. 

After going into half-time at 2-0 down, Liverpool produced an inspired second half comeback, with Torres scoring in front of the Kop to make it 4-2.

Featured Image Credit: Liverpool Football Club