Jurgen Klopp has addressed an emotional message in Liverpool’s matchday programme to grieving goalkeeper Alisson Becker, who last week lost his father in a drowning accident in Brazil.
Klopp, who says he has struggled to speak about the tragedy in public, wrote instead in the programme notes ahead of Liverpool’s clash against Chelsea.
“And so to the most difficult sentences I think I have written in this publication since I arrived here. I refer of course to our goalkeeper Alisson Becker,” he began.
“It’s been almost impossible to speak about in public, to be honest — just too hard. But maybe I can write it better,
“The world has experienced too much loss recently. We have other members of our club who have suffered it. In the city of Liverpool, throughout this country and around the globe, too many have to deal with the agony of losing a person they love so much. Bereavement is too common just now.
“But for Ali, our wonderful, loving, soulful team-mate, this was truly tragic. No-one really has the words to explain what they feel in these moments. I know I’m not adequate.
“So instead I wish to tell Alisson how much this team and this club loves him and his family. The greatest tribute possible to Alisson’s father is the person his son is and has become. He honours him every day with how he lives his life.
“We must all give Ali as much time as he needs and we must give him space in the appropriate moments also. Our supporters should know that he feels their love and compassion,” wrote Klopp.
He added that Becker has “the strongest faith of anyone I’ve ever met”.
“So he knows they will be together again to celebrate all the new special memories he creates from now on,” he said.
Becker’s father, Jose Becker, accidentally drowned in a dam near his property last Wednesday. He was 57.
While Becker was absent on compassionate grounds against Sheffield United, the keeper was back in training ahead of tonight's match against the Blues.