• Quote: ‘When they handed out A-Level certificates my Headmaster said I hope it works out in football, otherwise it’s not looking good for you’

By Andrew Atkinson

Jurgen Klopp ticked off his sports ‘wish-list’ when playing crown green bowls at Formby Holy Trinity Bowling Club on Merseyside.

“It’s more difficult than you can imagine,” said Liverpool manager Klopp.

“Bowls first caught my eye aged 16,” said Stuttgart, German born Klopp, 53, who lives in Formby.

Klopp, who won the Premier League title in the 2019-20 season, the UEFA Champions League 2018-19, Super Cup 2019 and 2019 FIFA Club World Cup, said: “It was on a school exchange in Luton when bowls first caught my eye. I also watched bowls in the Commonwealth Games.

Jurgen Klopp at Formby Holy Trinity Bowling Club.
Jurgen Klopp at Formby Holy Trinity Bowling Club.

“Bowls was always on my sporting bucket ‘wish-list’ ever since I went on the school exchange to England as a teenager.”

Klopp played for Mainz 05 as both a striker, scoring 56 goals, switching to defender during his time at the club, between 1990-2001.

After retiring Klopp who followed his father, former goalkeeper Norbert into football, took charge of Mainz 05 gaining promotion to the Bundesliga.

Klopp aspired to become a Doctor, but did not believe he was clever enough: “When they handed out the A-Level certificates my Headmaster said to me ‘I hope it works out in football, otherwise it’s not looking good for you’,” said Klopp, who became Liverpool manager in 2015.

On playing crown green bowls, Klopp said: “It was a great pleasure and I will come back.”

Jurgen Klopp’s mother Elisabeth passed away in February 2020 and he was unable to attend her funeral in Germany, due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions.

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