Arne Slot name drops Novak Djokovic in first Liverpool interview in hint at tactics

Novak Djokovic has earned praise off new Liverpool boss Arne Slot. (Image: Getty)

Arne Slot has praised the resilience of tennis star Novak Djokovic during his first interview as Liverpool manager.

Slot arrives at Anfield following a successful stint with Feyenoord, where he inspired the Rotterdam-based outfit to a Dutch Cup and league title.

The 45-year-old has big shoes to fill, with Jurgen Klopp having taken Liverpool back to the top of English and European football.

Not that the Dutchman is shying away from the task at hand, with Slot keen to pick up from where his predecessor Klopp left off.

What’s more, Slot has revealed he enjoys adopting aspects from different sports and bringing them into his coaching.

Praising the mentality of record grand slam winner Djokovic, the new Reds boss told the official Liverpool website: “Not tactically, of course, because those are different sports, but the way some sports handle the mental side of the game can help you.

“And I sometimes used it in team meetings before a game, so I tried to use examples of cycling or at the moment we’ve seen Roland-Garros and we’ve seen [Novak] Djokovic winning in a really tough game, and I think that’s one of his qualities, that he can also win the game when it’s not going his way, he can still find a way to win it.

“I think those are examples you can use towards players as well. But let’s be clear: we are mostly talking about football and it’s not going to be the situation that players are going to listen to all kinds of other sports. Sometimes I use it but only if I think it’s necessary.”

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Novak Djokovic boasts the record for the most Grand Slam titles won by a male tennis player. (Image: Getty)

Slot hasn’t been afraid to ring the changes following Klopp’s nine-year stint in Merseyside, with the coach having brought his support staff from Feyenoord with him.

On his backroom staff, Slot said: “I bring in Sipke Hulshoff, who’s been my assistant for a few years now at Feyenoord. I worked with him long ago, I worked with him at Cambuur Leeuwarden as well.

“He was the assistant of Ronald Koeman of the Dutch national team as well, but he is going to join me now from the start. A bit older than me, I think, not so much but a bit older than me. Because we have worked together for such a long time, I think the both of us know exactly what we want when it comes to game model, playing style – and I think that helps.

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“Then we will bring in a performance coach, Ruben Peeters, who is going to help me and the club with – how would I put this in English words? – the way we are working on the physical side.

“Us three have worked together at Feyenoord for three years now and we know how we want to work, which is normal.”

Source: https://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/1913179/Arne-Slot-Novak-Djokovic-Liverpool