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Arne Slot: Liverpool open negotiations with Feyenoord about possibility of hiring Dutchman as new manager



Liverpool remain in talks over appointing Arne Slot after Feyenoord turned down their opening offer for the manager.

The Premier League side made an approach worth £7.75m for the 45-year-old but it is expected to cost Liverpool closer to £9m if Slot is to become Jurgen Klopp’s successor.

Sky Sports News reported on Tuesday that Slot is at the forefront of Liverpool’s search.

The Feyenoord boss ticks all their key criteria for the position and sources in Holland indicate the process could move quickly, with the Dutchman keen to move to Anfield.

‘Liverpool’s move for Slot has been rapid’

Sky Sports News senior reporter Melissa Reddy:

Talks continue between Liverpool and Feyenoord for Slot to become Jurgen Klopp’s successor.

There was an opening offer of £7.75m which was turned down today by Feyenoord. That’s totally normal because the first bid you make is usually just a negotiating starting point.

My understanding is the fee would need to be in the region of £9m for the deal to be closed.

Sources in Holland early this morning were telling me they expect this process to move very quickly because of Slot’s desire to manage Liverpool.

The fact the clubs are already discussing a financial agreement is quite significant. Moving quickly is an understatement here – wow, it has been rapid.

Neither Feyenoord nor Liverpool want to provide minute-by-minute coverage of what’s been happening in these talks but I’m told it’s been very respectful. The relationship between the clubs is very good.

Ultimately, the reality is that Feyenoord want to keep Slot but they understand this is such a big opportunity and they can’t really stand in his way. Their goal is to get the best price possible and potentially move that figure up to the £10m mark.

Whether they get there, we’ll see.

Why are Liverpool keen on Slot?

Slot, who secured the KNVB Cup last weekend and led Feyenoord to their first title in six years last season, appeals to Liverpool due to his aggressive, full-throttle style.

He has drilled his team to be adept at turning defensive actions into shooting opportunities and they top the Eredivisie for tackles won in the opposition’s final third.

Feyenoord have the best defence in the league and the second-best offensive metrics.

Slot has proved capable of improving individuals as well as the collective, while operating on a smaller budget than his core competitors, and his penchant for a 4-2-3-1 or 4-3-3 formation fits Liverpool’s squad.

Slot has previously been approached by Tottenham, Chelsea and Leeds. He signed a new contract last May to keep him at Feyenoord until 2026 but has referenced a desire to make the next step in his career.

Sporting manager Ruben Amorim was under consideration by Liverpool but sources say he is no longer in the frame, as it stands.

West Ham are interested in Amorim but Julen Lopetegui, the former Wolves, Real Madrid and Spain boss, and Paulo Fonseca, currently in charge of Lille, are considered the frontrunners.

‘Slot brings crazy, sexy football’

Slot took over from Dick Advocaat at Feyenoord for the start of the 2021/22 season with the club having finished fifth the previous campaign.

Just two years later, they were champions of the Eredivisie. He built a pressing team playing intense, attack-minded football while also being able to win.

Feyenoord are second behind PSV Eindhoven this season, nine points adrift with four games to play. In Europe, they finished third in their Champions League group before dropping into the Europa League, where they were knocked out by Roma on penalties in February.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Dutch football journalist Marcel van der Kraan said: “He is the prime candidate for Liverpool.

“It was only a matter of time before another big English club would come knocking on the door. He’s not only been a successful manager, he’s also been hugely impressive with his playing style of very attack-minded, Pep Guardiola-style football.

“I don’t expect Feyenoord to stand in the way. They know he’s a manager in demand but they will demand a big compensation fee. He has two years left on his contract.

“That was a record deal. Never before in Dutch football has a team paid a manager such huge wages.

“The players like him, the fans love him, the club love him – they won’t want him to go. Feyenoord have every right to demand a big fee as there is no clause in his contract, which he renewed last year.

“He’s been a successful coach and made Feyenoord champions playing crazy, sexy football. It is sexy what this man brings on a football pitch.

“There’s nothing more to win for him here. The next step for him is to enter a club in a big league and no league is bigger for the Dutch than the Premier League.

“I will be surprised if Slot doesn’t bite at this chance and become the manager of Liverpool next season.”

What has Slot said about managing in Premier League?

Last summer, Slot was one of the leading contenders for the then-vacant Tottenham manager’s role and Sky Sports News reporter Gary Cotterill went to Rotterdam to cover the story.

Cotterill found Slot to be “engaging, polite, very smiley, he’s got presence and charisma – and he’s funny” when writing about his trip to get the lowdown on the Feyenoord boss, who has been open about his desire to manage in the Premier League.

“My next step will not be a club in Holland,” he said in May 2023.

“If that is my next step, then I’ve failed completely. The normal next step will be to go abroad and I’ve always said the best league in the world is the Premier League.”

What happened with Tottenham’s approach for Slot?

Spurs were determined to get Slot last summer after he secured the Eredivisie title with Feyenoord.

However, Slot ruled himself out of the running to take over in north London before signing a new contract at Feyenoord a few days later which runs until 2026.

“I’m not done here yet,” Slot said after the announcement of his new deal.

The potential deal with Spurs never got to any formal stage of discussions with him or Feyenoord and Spurs bosses felt that Slot used their interest in him to get an improved contract in the Netherlands.

Ange Postecoglou was eventually appointed by Spurs from Celtic.

‘Slot is no shrinking violet’

European football expert Andy Brassell told Sky Sports News:

“Slot is a guy who has got a consistent record of success and playing attacking football over several years. That idea of redeveloping teams and working with younger players as well is something that really appeals to Liverpool.

“The way he wants to attack would really appeal to Liverpool fans, too. He always wants his teams to find a way to put pressure on the opposition, to press, to score goals, and they do that in Europe as well.

“No one is quite like Jurgen Klopp in front of the media, but Slot is no shrinking violet at all. We’ve seen this when his side have played Roma and he’s come up against Jose Mourinho. He’s not afraid to upset and won’t back down.

“Premier League clubs have known he would fit in well for quite a while. The Premier League has moved more towards possession and front-foot football, so it’s probably the right time for Slot.

“Of course, there’s a gap in quality compared to the Eredivisie, but he’ll have better players at his disposal in the Premier League.”

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