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Liverpool and FSG using Bundesliga template to help transfers, Klopp and Edwards

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Liverpool have made some crucial backroom changes heading into 2021, with new roles created to help with scouting, transfers and more alongside sporting director Michael Edwards.

For the first time in Liverpool’s history, they now have an assistant sporting director in Julian Ward, while the Reds have also hired the ‘number one in Germany', according to Jurgen Klopp, in new head of recovery and performance, Dr. Andreas Schlumberger.



Ward arrived at Anfield from Manchester City in 2012 to work in recruitment and scouting, before in 2015 he became Liverpool's loans manager, working across England and Europe.



Ward has previously worked as a football consultant, and was a scout and analyst for the Portugal national team in 2008 so has a decent grasp of Portuguese.



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He remained in that post until shortly after the 2010 World Cup, when the opportunity to work in the Latin European and South American segment of Manchester City’s scouting department arose.

Since moving to Liverpool, he has worked closely with sporting director Edwards as part of that role, as well as Academy director Alex Inglethorpe and, of course, Klopp.

Ward is actually the first ever ‘assistant sporting director’ in England, as Liverpool move towards a model that is more reminiscent of the Bundesliga, where such a role is more common.

He has overseen the development of players like Harry Wilson and Harvey Elliott, and would also have been crucial in correctly deciding a loan move for Curtis Jones was not the way to go.

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Loans have also allowed Liverpool to pocket around £7m for Ryan Kent and £23m for Rhian Brewster as well as countless others - meaning he has been crucial to deals that Liverpool have received widespread received praise for.

Ward's previous role has been filled by David Woodfine, who moves from head of football projects and scouting operations to director of loan management. Woodfine had previously worked with Edwards at Portsmouth.

But all of these changes do not mean Edwards, who is still just 41, is going anywhere.

Under Edwards, head of recruitment Dave Fallows, chief scout Barry Hunter and director of research Ian Graham still remain crucial cogs behind the scenes at Anfield.

Ward and Woodfine are essentially now being rewarded for their work, but those above them remain the big-hitters.

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Dr. Schlumberger, meanwhile, has been brought in to help with rehab and recovery, adding to the medical team.

He worked with Klopp at Borussia Dortmund between 2011 and 2015 and they also studied at the same university - Goethe Institute in Frankfurt.

"I’ve known him for years, we studied at the same university, so I’ve followed his way all the way through," said Klopp recently.

"Then we worked together for a few years at Dortmund, he went to Bayern, worked for Gladbach, worked for Schalke, worked before that for Nurnberg and for the German FA.

"The CV is just incredible, absolutely incredible. If you would ask people in Germany, in this area – rehab, performance, recovery – he is number one in Germany."

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Schlumberger will help replace Philipp Jacobsen, who it was announced in September was leaving his role at Liverpool.

The 54-year-old joins from Schalke but has worked in several different clubs including Bayern Munich - another Bundesliga link to the Reds.

Liverpool are already leading the way in most regards off the pitch, but the new appointments and promotions will only further help them stay ahead of the pack.


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