Liverpool transfer chief Michael Edwards to leave with replacement already lined up
Liverpool’s Jürgen Klopp welcomes sporting director Michael Edwards
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Liverpool are set for a big change next summer behind the scenes with Michael Edwards reportedly stepping down from his role as sporting director. It was little over a year after Jurgen Klopp’s arrival at Anfield in October 2015 when Edwards was promoted to his current role at Liverpool.
He was thrown in at the deep end with Philippe Coutinho’s future unclear at that time before agreeing terms on a record deal worth £142million with Barcelona.
Virgil van Dijk’s arrival was also the first signing of Edwards’ reign as sporting director.
And while the signings of Fabinho, Alisson and Diogo Jota among others have been pivotal in helping Liverpool earn huge success in recent years, Edwards’ record for generating huge profits from player sales over the years has arguably earned him his status among Liverpool fans.
More than £250m has been recouped in player sales over the past few years which has ultimately led the club to being able to make the signings that they have.
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Ibrahima Konate’s arrival to solve Liverpool’s centre-back issues from last season has seemingly been funded by the sales of bit-part players this summer.
The net spend of Liverpool since Edwards became sporting director has been moderate at best compared to other sides challenging for the Premier League.
But it appears as though Liverpool will have to move in a different direction next summer when Edwards’ contract comes to an end.
According to The Athletic, Edwards has already informed Liverpool that he plans to leave at the end of his current deal.
There is a suggestion that he could perform a U-turn on his decision, but there is an ‘anticipation’ that he will leave.
The report adds that Edwards’ decision to leave isn’t anything to do with the possibility of moving to another club.
And Liverpool already have a ready-made replacement lined up for Edwards’ imminent departure.
Julian Ward was promoted to assistant sporting director last December and he’s said to be ‘highly regarded.
Ward has already reportedly established himself as an ‘influential figure’ behind the scenes.
And he’s worked closely with Klopp and the recruitment staff since taking up his new role.
But he will have a tough act to follow with Edwards, who originally helped form Liverpool’s infamous ‘transfer committee’.
Speaking back in December 2019, Klopp opened up on the “brilliant” relationship he has with Edwards.
“[The relationship] is brilliant, absolutely brilliant,” he said. “Mike Gordon (FSG president) is here [in Liverpool] at the moment as everyone knows!
“It is a very good relationship, his whole department is doing a sensational job. It was an easy decision making at these times in Liverpool.
“It is good. It is all based on a lot of thought, he is a very thoughtful person and we don’t have to always have to have the same opinion from the first second of a conversation but we finish pretty much all the talks with the same opinion. Or similar opinions.
“That is all good. It is really great working together. All the relationships we have created over the years, all the time we have spent together, it was important.”
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