4 “They have had results against the big sides – and that wasn’t something that we always saw under Brendan Rodgers,” says Carragher.“His record against some of the big teams wasn’t great. So although the team is nearer mid-table than the top of the table, under Klopp that does seem to have turned around.“We talk about his pressing game and winning the ball back – but you have a lot less opportunity to do that against sides who give you more possession.“Against the likes of Manchester City or Arsenal, you expect them to have the majority of the possession. That can play into Liverpool’s hands.”Carragher is unequivocal that the right man is in place for the challenge of revitalising Liverpool. “He’s been a breath of fresh air. He’s brilliant. Not just for Liverpool, but for the Premier League as well, actually.“I know we’re all excited because Pep Guardiola is coming in [at Manchester City], but Klopp is a massive character. That is exactly what a club like Liverpool needs.”The architectThe former Reds defender’s optimism isn’t based on blind faith. Klopp has shown a blueprint of what he can do at Liverpool during his time with Borussia Dortmund.As German football writer Elmar Neveling points out in his biography of Klopp: “The sporting architect of the [Dortmund] success story was Jurgen Klopp. Within three years, he had transformed an average, mid-table team into national champions.”The message is clear: Klopp can win major titles without necessarily having the league’s greatest resources.His Dortmund team not only beat Bayern Munich five times in succession as they won back-toback Bundesliga titles, they also bested Real Madrid 4-1 on their way to the 2013 Champions League final.Yet Klopp is a manager who craves time on the training pitch to drill his players into a team playing the “full-throttle football” he craves.The 31 games that he’s been in charge of Liverpool since arriving in October have rushed by in a blur.Not having time to work with his players because there’s always been another match around the corner has been a clear frustration.The six days off after Liverpool’s Europa League draw with Augsburg last Thursday will have been most welcome.Yet even Klopp can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear. The current Liverpool squad has some skilled players, but in Carragher’s view it requires backbone.“I’d go right through the spine of the team, to be honest,” he says on where reinforcements are most needed.“If it were me, I’d be looking at the positions of goalkeeper, centre-back and central midfield.“The centre-forward one is difficult, because if you can get Daniel Sturridge fit you don’t need it as much.”What’s clear is that Klopp didn’t decide to join Liverpool because of the quality of the players he would be linking up with. Other factors were at play.He fitted in superbly at Dortmund because, even more than most football clubs, it was part of a community and a representation of the fans who support it. The bond was palpable.No surprise that Klopp was drawn to Liverpool, then. And no surprise at his shock in November when, after Liverpool went 2-1 down to Crystal Palace, some fans began to exit Anfield.“The goal was on 82 minutes – 12 minutes to go – and I saw many people leaving the stadium,” he said post-match. “I turned around and I watched – my team and I felt pretty alone in that moment.”From the bouncing, bawling ‘yellow wall’ at the Westfalenstadion to fans leaving at one goal down with 10 minutes left to play. Little wonder at Klopp’s alarm. 4 This interview appears in the current edition of Sport magazine. Download the free iPad app here, and follow on twitter @sportmagukIf a week is a long time in football, two seasons must feel like an eternity.Liverpool fans can attest to this.Two years ago this month, their team battered Arsenal 5-1 at Anfield.Another 10 straight Premier League wins followed against foes including Manchester United (3-0), Tottenham (4-0) and Manchester City (3-2).That breathtaking title tilt came unstuck in a 2-0 loss to Chelsea – but the real story has been the struggle since.Brendan Rodgers, on such a high at the time, was fired less than 18 months after that season ended.While Liverpool’s removal of Rodgers looks the right decision, it’s easy to have sympathy for him.The blistering run of form in the second half of 2013/14 had precious little to do with Liverpool’s defence.It was all about the midfield and attacking six: Steven Gerrard, Raheem Sterling, Jordan Henderson, Philippe Coutinho, Daniel Sturridge and – principally – Luis Suarez.In the fifth game of this season, Rodgers’ Liverpool faced Manchester United and he could select precisely none of those players.Suarez and Sterling had been sold. Gerrard had left the club. Sturridge was – and seems to remain – chronically injured. Henderson was also bothered by fitness issues. Coutinho was suspended.What team could possibly cope with such a dramatic change?Before you suspect that this is being written by Mr B Rodgers of Northern Ireland (managerial CV attached), fear not. Rodgers clearly had to go. Results, performances, recruitment (which he was at least partly responsible for) all show that.Why is all this relevant to Liverpool now? Because Jurgen Klopp’s arrival alone can’t change the fact he faces the same problem Rodgers did: Liverpool, post-Suarez, post-Gerrard – and for the first time in many fans’ memories – do not have a truly world-class player in their squad. 77 and 10,000+Yet we had a reminder this month of why Liverpool remains a special club.On February 6, more than 10,000 Liverpool fans cleared out of Anfield 77 minutes into their side’s match against Sunderland in protest over increased ticket fees.Many of those were supporters in the Kop, whose season ticket price would have been unchanged for next season. Yet they walked out in solidarity with their fellow fans in the main stand.Carragher was among those who left, pointing out that while £2m (the amount raised by the price increase) meant relatively little to the club with the ninth-highest revenue in world football, it was a huge amount to Liverpool supporters.The immediate apology, backtrack and freezing of ticket revenue for two seasons by the owners heartened Carragher.“It was fantastic that the club saw sense, because supporters are a big part of the success of the club,” he says.“I just think the owners got it wrong – and Liverpool supporters reacted – but you don’t want to see that happening all the time.“A stand has been made, but let’s hope the club have put it to rest.“You never want to be at war with your owners or the club, because we all want the same things, which is to see Liverpool be successful.”With a new stand set to boost Anfield’s capacity to 55,000, one of the brightest managers in world football in charge and a shot at silverware this weekend, there are bright signs for the future.And while it’s easy for rival football fans to sneer and point out that the Liverpool owners’ backtracking represents fans celebrating still paying a lot of money to watch live football, this is disingenuous.The scale as well as the success of the protest showed off one of Liverpool’s great assets: a clued-up, passionate fanbase who understand that Liverpool is more than just a football club and are fervently motivated given the right cause.Klopp voiced dismay when he saw fans leaving early at Anfield.This month, the exact same thing happening might just have reminded him exactly why he wanted to take on this job in the first place. 4 4 Quality deficiency“The quality of player at Liverpool isn’t what they had before,” confirms Jamie Carragher when Sport asks him what Klopp’s greatest challenge is.“I think Sturridge is really the one top-class player – maybe Coutinho. What Klopp has inherited isn’t comparable to what Liverpool have had in the past.“Also, look at the competition you’ve got now. Liverpool have always been one of the top teams – but you’ve got Manchester City, Chelsea, Manchester United, Arsenal, and Tottenham now coming up as well. Those teams aren’t waiting for Liverpool.“They’re looking to push ahead. Spurs will have a new stadium, Chelsea are doing the same, Arsenal obviously have their new stadium. They’re all making changes off the pitch that should benefit them on the pitch.“There’s so many teams who have the same ideas and aspirations as Liverpool that it’s certainly not easy for Klopp to just buy a few players and get Liverpool back to the top. It’s going to be really tough.”Despite winning over football folk with his charm and no-bullshit interviews (note to Brendan), Klopp hasn’t found results easy.A popular stat going into Sunday’s League Cup final at Wembley – where his team face Manchester City – is that Klopp has won 13 of his 31 Liverpool games, the same win record Roy Hodgson had at the club.Hodgson was fired before he could play game 32.But those stats don’t tell us everything. Klopp has lost fewer games than Hodgson did, and there have been good performances against Liverpool’s fellow big boys: a 4-1 win over Manchester City, 3-1 against Chelsea (albeit during the Blues’ meltdown), plus respective 3-3 and 0-0 draws with Arsenal and Tottenham.