During a press conference with Liverpool’s football manager Jurgen Klopp which was posted on Liverpool FC – (Liverpool Echo’s Facebook page) last Wednesday (March 4), the German manager was asked his opinion on the COVID-19 epidemic and its effect on football. The reporter asked, “I have a question about the coronavirus. Are you worried as a team, as a club, about the spread of it or how it might affect you?”
But the reporter received an unexpected response from Klopp.
Liverpool’s manager retorted, “Look, what I don’t like in life is that, a very serious thing a football manager’s opinion is important. I don’t understand it. I really don’t understand it. I could ask you, you’re exactly the same role than I am, so, and it’s not important what famous people say.”
Despite the journalist’s attempts to defend what he was asking, Mr Klopp continued with his statement saying, “No, we have to speak about things in the right manner. Not people with no knowledge, like me, talking about something. People with knowledge should talk about it and should tell the people do this, do that, do this and everything will be fine or not, not football managers. I don’t understand that, politics, coronavirus.”
As he continued with what some might have called a lecture, Klopp made some very interesting points as to why the question should not have been directed at him saying, “Why me? I wear a base (ball) cap and I have a bad shave. I’m concerned as much as you, maybe less, I’m not sure. I don’t know exactly what’s your amount, or is a big concern, but my opinion is really not important. I live on this planet and I want the planet to be safe, healthy, I wish everybody the best, absolutely, but my opinion about corona is not important. If somebody tells me we play football, we play football because I think smarter people said we can play football. I will not make the decision.”
While the rest of the world has made concessions to move or cancel big events that normally have thousands of people in attendance, some have already gone ahead and actually moved or cancelled theirs. There is even talk of postponing the upcoming 2020 Olympic Games that are set to happen in Japan this summer.
For now, it seems that football will continue to go on until further notice. Or at least, until the “smarter people” say that they can no longer play.