“Done Remarkably Well” – Portuguese Expert On ‘Amazing’ Liverpool Linked Manager

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By Lewis Thompson

Finding a Jurgen Klopp replacement at Liverpool will be near enough an impossible task, but it has to be done, and there have been numerous names mentioned as to who it could be.

Xabi Alonso is rumoured to be the club’s first choice and is who the majority of fans want as the next boss, while names like Roberto De Zerbi, Zinedine Zidane and Julian Nagesmann have also crept up.

One name that we keep hearing is Ruben Amorim, but it doesn’t feel like anyone knows much about him and whether he would be a good fit at Anfield…

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“His man management is remarkable and all the players believe in what he says,” said Aaron Barton, data editor at Opta and an expert in Portuguese football.

Barton sat down with Dan Clubbe to discuss Amorim in our latest Expert Insight show, a Portuguese manager currently residing at Sporting CP, who sit top of the Liga Portugal.

“When people think about Portuguese football, they think of Porto, Benfica, and obviously Sporting as the three big clubs,” Barton said.

“Like they almost take it in turns at winning the title, but the reality is it was a top two before Amorim came in.

“Sporting were very good in the early 2000s, but they hadn’t won a league title for 19 years before Amorim came to the Alvalade [Sporting’s home stadium].”

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Amorim was once a professional footballer and started his senior managerial career at Braga towards the end of 2019.

During this time, Amorim guided his side to their first away win at Benfica in 65 years, while also winning the domestic League Cup final against Porto.

Sporting swooped in for Amorim in March 2020, as they paid out his release clause which was around 15 million Euros at the time – one of the highest-ever paid for a manager.

The club went all out to make sure that Amorim was their man, as they believed he was someone who could transform them while bringing home titles and cups along the way.

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“Considering the amount of departures he’s had, Amorim has done remarkably well,” Barton added. 

“He’s got a very clear idea of how he wants his teams to play, what players work/don’t work in his system and he works closely with the youth team coaches to see if there are any gaps that he can plug.”

Amorim won the league title in his first season at Sporting and finished second the following campaign while reaching the Round of 16 in the Champions League.

The 39-year-old then finished fourth last season, with key players such as Pedro Porro, Joao Palhinha and Matheus Nunes having all left for the Premier League.

“He’s amazing with the media, in terms of always saying the right things in press conferences, even when he’s in a mood,” Barton said.

“He’ll have the players thinking. ‘Right it’s us versus them’…he’s got that edge about him.

“There have been quite a few press conferences where you find that he is hitting all the right notes, he’s got character for a younger manager especially.”


Amorim works with a three-at-the-back system and sets his side up in a 3-4-3, similar to how Alonso presents his Bayer Leverkusen side week in and week out.

The Portuguese man adheres to his play style, consistently sticking with the same philosophy and brand of football regardless of the opponent.

“He likes to get players in and around the attacking areas, especially the wing-backs,” Barton said.

“He used to have Porro on one side with Mendes on the other, and every game, even against the big sides, they were able to almost neutralise their attacking threat just by being so attacking themselves.

“It gives the opposition something to think about when you have two players that are quick, technically very good and can cross the ball.”

Amorim’s side knocked Arsenal out of the Europa League and remain at the summit of the Portuguese league this season, with one game in hand on Benfica and Porto in second and third.

So, that raises the question…would another domestic title win qualify Amorim for the Anfield job?


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