They say a country gets the politicians it deserves, but what about football managers? Up in Liverpool, UK, a city in love with the beautiful art of sportswear, their manager Jurgen Klopp recently explained why you won’t see him wearing a suit on the touchline.
Speaking to Reshmin Chowdhury of Talksport Radio, Klopp said:
“I have a suit for weddings, funerals and if somebody tells me I have to wear a suit. For me it’s not ideal,”
“I have a suit for weddings, funerals & if someone tells me I must wear it.”
“When I started in the CL I did it as someone said it’s a duty!”
“I don’t want to look good, my team should look good.”
Jurgen Klopp explains why you won’t see him in a #LFC suit! pic.twitter.com/nyHE1i5x4c— talkSPORT (@talkSPORT) 13 September 2019
Should we be surprised by this sartorial revelation? Probably not. Klopp is an uncomplicated man who says what he thinks. As a player he was adaptable, switching from striker to defender as his career progressed, and as a manager his Gegenpress has lead to some calling his style ‘heavy metal’ football. You won’t see many three-pieces at an Iron Maiden gig.
Klopp went on to explain that, like most people, he thought he had to wear a suit to work.
“When I first started in the Champions League I wore them because I was told by somebody it was a duty.”
And then went on to explain that, like much of the new business world, he realized that wearing a suit wasn’t essential.
“From the first time I saw another manager next to me not wearing a suit, I was done.”
Now Klopp relies on whatever Liverpool’s kit man gives him, which means you’ll likely see him in the club’s black New Balance tracksuit.
There is, of course, a strong precedent set for dressing down at work. Steve Jobs wore the same black polo neck, jeans and New Balance sneakers every day to reduce what’s called decision fatigue. The theory being that the less arbitrary decisions you make, the more headspace you’ll have to focus on the big stuff. Like managing relations between Sadio Mane and Mo Salah.
Whatever Klopp is doing it seems to be working. Expect to see Pochettino on the touchline in slippers come December.