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Why I reached out to Van Dijk first — Arne Slot



Why I reached out to Van Dijk first --- Arne Slot

Arne Slot, Liverpool’s newly appointed head coach, has disclosed that captain Virgil van Dijk was the first player he spoke to following his confirmation as Jurgen Klopp’s successor. This revelation came during Slot’s first official interview with the club, which was released on Wednesday afternoon.

In his debut interview, Slot discussed his transition into the role, the legacy left by Klopp, and his aspirations for Liverpool. The 45-year-old Dutchman, who previously managed Feyenoord, emphasized the importance of building a strong connection with the Liverpool fanbase while continuing the impressive work done by Klopp.

Slot explained his approach to contacting players:

“I’ve reached out to a few of them – all of them after Jurgen left because I thought that was really important to be fair to Jürgen and be fair to the players. Because they had to end the season and I don’t think I would be really happy if my successor would have called players before I left the club.

“Then I think it’s normal to start with the captain, which is Virgil [van Dijk], which is an easy one for me because we could speak Dutch!”

Slot further elaborated on his communication strategy, stating:

“And from there on I called a few others, but not many of them because most of them are in preparation, or at this moment playing, at the Euros, and some others are in preparation at the Copa America. So I think the best way is to keep a certain distance but also be interested in them as well.

“And hoping that most of them – especially the Dutch! – will still be as long as possible away so they will reach the final. Then afterwards I will get to meet them and I think that’s a better way of getting to know each other than by phone or Zoom meetings.”

Slot’s methodical and respectful approach to taking over from Klopp has already set a positive tone, with fans eagerly anticipating how his leadership will shape Liverpool’s future.