Klopp’s impending resignation has been good for Liverpool’s brand
February 9th, 2024, Stephan Shakespeare

Klopp’s impending resignation has been good for Liverpool’s brand

The announcement that Jürgen Klopp would be stepping down as Liverpool manager at the end of the season shocked the world of football – with the Champions League and Premier League-winning coach claiming he was “running out of the energy” needed to do the job. 

It might reasonably be expected that this would damage Liverpool’s brand, but data from YouGov FootballIndex suggests it hasn’t yet had this effect. Between Klopp’s announcement on 26 January and 4 February, Liverpool’s Quality scores (which measure whether the club is well or poorly run) rose from 25.6 to 34.0 (+8.4). 

Impression scores, which measure whether the public like the club’s players and coaches, jumped from 5.6 to 11.7 (+6.1), while Recommend scores, which track whether the club is perceived as successful or not, saw a ten-point improvement from 41.4 to 51.4 over the same period.  Liverpool’s Index scores, which average several metrics to paint a picture of overall brand health, increased from 23.9 to 31.1 (+7.2). 

None of which is to say that the impending departure of one of the club’s most decorated managers is necessarily perceived as a good thing – especially since, over the timeframe we tracked, Liverpool won two of the three matches they played. But top-flight football managers seldom leave jobs of their own volition, and announcing his departure well in advance gives the club and its followers time to prepare. 

Still, even solid succession planning can go awry (it’s the kind of thing that might make for a good TV show). Bob Iger handpicked Bob Chapek to take over as Disney CEO, only to return a few years later after reported internal struggles; none of Manchester United’s managers since 2013 have repeated Sir Alex Ferguson’s feats so far. Liverpool’s brand has held up well so far, but much will depend on the manager who inherits Klopp’s mantle.