Jurgen Klopp reveals his future plans, Dejan Lovren could leave Liverpool, Willian rejects MLS move and the Premier League prepares to bring back fans. It's Monday's Paper Round...
Klopp looks to the future
Jurgen Klopp has been talking about his future and has revealed his plans to leave Liverpool. The Reds boss has confirmed that he will stay at the club for four more years before returning to Germany. Klopp signed a new four-year contract at Anfield back in December and he aims to honour it before departing in 2024. The 53-year-old admitted that he wants to head back to Germany and "do nothing for a year" after leaving Liverpool and also mentioned that he would like to return to Mainz - a club that he previously played for and managed - but he didn't specify whether it was to live or in a working capacity.
Paper Round's view: Klopp has been in charge at Anfield since 2015 and has finally clinched the club's holy grail. The Premier League title has returned to Liverpool after 30 years - so now the German has to make sure that his side defend the trophy. Klopp will have his own aims for his next four years on Merseyside, but he has won the Champions League, UEFA Super Cup, FIFA Club World Cup and now the Premier League. It will be difficult to keep winning trophies - but the former Borussia Dortmund boss knows how to keep the fans happy. Some fans will be devastated that he admitted his plans to depart in four years - but they should be happy he is staying for that long. Nine years is a long time to stay at one club in modern football.
Chelsea have three games to save Kai Havertz deal – Euro Papers
Lovren's leaving Liverpool
Staying with Liverpool, Reds defender Dejan Lovren could be on the move this summer with interest from Zenit St Petersburg, according to the Standard. The Croatian centre-back has emerged as a summer transfer target for the Russian champions and Liverpool are open to sell Lovren - if the right offer comes in. The 31-year-old has less than a year remaining on his current contract and has fallen down the pecking order at Anfield. Zenit are keen to complete a deal for Lovren and the fact that they have qualified for next season's Champions League could tempt the Liverpool defender to join the Russian club.
Paper Round's view: If Liverpool receive a half-decent offer for Lovren, they would be stupid to reject it. The Croatia international is now a fourth-choice centre-back at the club, behind Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip. If Lovren doesn't leave this summer, he will end up departing for free in 2021 - so it's Liverpool last chance to receive a transfer fee for their defender. Jurgen Klopp signed the highly-rated youngster Sepp van den Berg last summer and if Lovren were to leave, it would give the Dutch teen more first-team opportunities. Ultimately, this transfer would make a lot of sense for Liverpool.
Chelsea winger Willian has rejected the opportunity to move to David Beckham's MLS side Inter Miami in a bid to stay in Europe, according to the Telegraph. The Brazilian looks likely to leave west London this summer with his contract expiring when the Premier League season ends, but he is yet to find a new club. Mike McGrath from the Telegraph states that Willian has rejected a "lucrative" three-year deal as Miami audaciously attempted to make him one of the highest paid players in the league. The 31-year-old has admitted his preference is to stay in England and play in the Champions League next season.
Paper Round's view: Basically Willian wants a new contract at Chelsea. The west London club have a famous policy in place that means they refuse to offer long-term contracts to players over 30 years old. Willian is 31 years old and fishing for a three-year deal. Chelsea broke their own policy in 2019 to hand 32-year-old David Luiz a two-year contract, but he ended up joining Arsenal later that summer. The Blues might budge for a two-year deal, but it's unlikely Willian will be offered three years. The Brazilian has been linked to both Arsenal and Tottenham, but the north London pair won't be playing in the Champions League next season. Willian might need to adjust his demands at Chelsea or accept he might not play in next season's edition of the Champions League.
Chelsea's Willian celebrates scoring against West Ham
Image credit: Getty Images
Premier League plans for crowds in 2020-21 season
Premier League clubs are preparing for fans to return to stadiums at the start of the 2020-21 season, according to the Independent. The report reveals that clubs from England's top tier are planning to fill 40 per cent of stadiums ahead of next season, which is rumoured to start in the middle of September. 40 per cent attendance would allow at least one seat between each supporter but older stadiums with tightly-packed stands might have to have a lower capacity due to social distancing measures. Wearing face masks would be mandatory for fans and the ticketing process would be electronic to help 'track and trace' if necessary.
Paper Round's view: It looks like a promising plan for the Premier League. Season-ticket holders would be prioritised and fans can attend if they wish to. It's a positive step towards normality but we can assume that the clubs wouldn't back the idea unless they were positive about the safety of their fans. It would probably mean that away fans wouldn't be allowed to attend, but any return to normality will please supporters. Hopefully England can avoid a second coronavirus wave and the plan can go ahead.