NBA superstar and Liverpool part-owner LeBron James has sent a message of gratitude to Jurgen Klopp following the announcement that the Reds manager would be stepping down at the end of the season.
Klopp’s decision sent shockwaves through the world of football and beyond when it was revealed on Friday morning, with no previous indications to suggest that he would cut short his time at Anfield.
Citing fatigue, the 56-year-old confirmed his departure in an emotional, in-house video interview which reverberated throughout the world of sport.
James, of the Los Angeles Lakers, was handed a minority stake in Liverpool back in 2011 when Fenway Sports Group (FSG) took control of his global image rights.
In 2021, the basketball legend became an FSG partner, taking an ownership stake in the group’s other sporting interests such as the Boston Red Sox.
“THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING AND MORE!! You are one helluva manager and you’ll never be forgotten and more importantly YOU’LL NEVER WALK ALONE!! The Reds will miss you!!” LeBron wrote on X, formerly Twitter, on Friday.
The search is now on for Klopp’s successor after nearly nine glorious years in charge. He has helped reestablish Liverpool as one of the world’s best clubs throughout his tenure, claiming every major honour available including the Champions League and the Premier League.
Liverpool are currently top of the Premier League and still in with a chance of a quadruple with interest alive in the Europa League as well as a Carabao Cup final versus Chelsea to come next month.
Ex-Red Xabi Alonso is the early front-runner as he has led Bayer Leverkusen to the top of the Bundesliga while Roberto De Zerbi of Brighton and Hove Albion has also been in the frame since news broke of Klopp’s impending exit.