Where Klopp’s ex-assistant Zeljko Buvac is now after walking out on Liverpool

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Zeljko Buvac unexpectedly quit as Liverpool assistant manager in April 2018 – but what has Jurgen Klopp's former right-hand man done since?

Buvac spent 17 years working alongside Klopp, first joining up with his former Mainz team-mate at the German club in 2001 after a three-year stint as Neukirchen manager.

The pair enjoyed great success at Mainz, achieving Bundesliga promotion and European qualification before heading to Borussia Dortmund in 2008, where they won two Bundesliga titles and the DFB-Pokal while reaching the Champions League final.

After Klopp left Dortmund and took the Liverpool reins in 2015, Buvac followed his good pal to Anfield and was building towards something promising when he departed out of the blue three years later.

At the business end of the 2017/18 campaign, and just two days before their crucial Champions League semi-final second leg against Roma, the Bosnian coach unofficially quit as Klopp's assistant.

Liverpool initially said Buvac, who Klopp previously labelled "the brain", was taking a leave of absence for the remainder of the 2017/18 campaign due to personal reasons, but it was later announced that he had left on a permanent basis.

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The Reds have enjoyed great success since he walked out, reaching the Champions League final the following month and, after losing 3-1 against Real Madrid, going one better and beating Tottenham in the 2018/19 showpiece.

With Pepijn Lijnders as his new assistant, Klopp then won Liverpool the Premier League title in record-breaking fashion the following season, becoming champions with seven games still to play.

Buvac, meanwhile, is now working as a sporting director for Russian Premier League club Dynamo Moscow.

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The 59-year-old took the post back in February 2020, and a year later he was quizzed about Liverpool and his split from Klopp in a rare interview with Nobel.

When asked if he congratulated the club for winning the Premier League title, he said: "I didn't. I was happy for Liverpool, for the fans, for the players. But I didn’t."

Buvac was then asked why he and Klopp went their separate ways, to which he replied: "Everyone asks how and why, but people live together for 30 years and then they break up. It happens."

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He also claimed to have rejected plenty of managerial offers after leaving Liverpool, adding: "I don’t want to be a manager now. If Barcelona calls me, then I’ll think about it, but otherwise no.

"You say I’m here just to stay occupied and wait for a better chance. But if you knew what kind of offers I had rejected during the pause in my career, you wouldn’t have said that. But I won’t tell you which clubs."

  • Jurgen Klopp
  • Liverpool FC

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