Andy Robertson is the perfect embodiment of the Jurgen Klopp era

  • Robertson’s development under Klopp was clear to see.  
  • His nominal fee would prove to be a massive return on investment 
  • Became one of the best left-backs in the world under Klopp
Burnley v Liverpool - Premier League
Burnley v Liverpool - Premier League / Alex Livesey/GettyImages

When Liverpool Football Club signed a a 23-year old Scottish left-back from relegated Hull City in the summer of 2017 for a nominal fee in the range of £8m-£10m, it was not met with much fanfare at all.

Hull City were one of the worst defensive teams in the league and Robertson was never allowed to truly show the world what he could do. Robertson became the Reds third signing of that transfer window behind Dominic Solanke and one Mohamed Salah.

A brief look back from today and one could deem that a successful transfer period based on those three deals alone.

Robertson needed to prove himself to football world

Upon signing with the Reds, Robertson spoke about his desire to prove his worth and take the next step in his career.

"There's not many, if any, more special clubs than Liverpool. When you grow up as a kid you dream of playing with big clubs such as Liverpool and to make that a reality is a dream come true for me."

He would continue: "I just want to prove to people that I can do it at this level, and hopefully I manage to do that this season and go on to do good things for this club."

At the time, Klopp was beginning to implement his vision of the club on a bigger scale and Robertson's attacking preference and seemingly limitless stamina were two attractive traits.

During the 2016-17 season with Hull, Robertson still posted strong analytical numbers despite playing in such a poor side. He was one of only two fullbacks in the league to average at least one dribble, one tackle and one interception per 90 minutes.

Liverpool needed a refresh at left-back

It is no secret that Klopp loves players with positional versatility. Perhaps no player reflected this more than James Milner.

Despite being a proven Premier League central midfielder, during the 2016-17 he found himself playing as a left-sided fullback at Anfield. It was unique to watch at the time and looking back is another example of how much this club has changed.

Robbo would be coming into a situation where Milner was the vice-Captain at the club and was a workhorse in his own right. In addition, Alberto Moreno was also at the club and was the first choice option when fit.

As a result, Robertson would spend a large portion of his early Reds career on the bench. However, when Moreno was injured for an extended period in December, the Scot took his chance and ran with it.

Klopp, one of the best man-managers in the business, knew that he needed to give Robbo time. The jump from relegated Hull City to playing for Liverpool in the Champions League is huge.

This patience showed by Jurgen gave Robbo the opportunity to truly blossom and grow without the pressure of needing to instantly take-off.

Development into a world class superstar

He would explode in his second full season at Anfield when he played 48 times and registered 13 assists from his left-back spot. The numbers would not stop from there on.

His trademark energy and passionate pressing quickly saw him become a Klopp and fan favorite. Klopp's heavy metal football philosophy is nothing without proper implementation. Robertson thrived in this capacity.

There might not be a more perfect example of who Andrew Robertson is a player than the above clip. Spirit, determination, passion and a tactical foundation to call on.

Those are also things that could be used to describe Jurgen Klopp. They were the perfect pairing to help elevate each other over the years.

As Liverpool turned into one of the best teams in the world, Robertson was evolving into the best left-back on the planet. He and Trent Alexander-Arnold make life so difficult for the opposition.

There is still more to come

As we bid a loving farewell to Jurgen Klopp, a new chapter is about to begin under Arne Slot. However, the form shown by Robertson in the final month of the season for the Reds indicates that at 30-years old, he still has a lot to offer.

Whereas Trent has Conor Bradley snapping at his heels, there is nobody in the pipeline threatening Robbo. Left-back is his and he continues to play with the belief that it will stay his.

Under FSG, Liverpool have prided themselves on being a club that can make shrewd deals and find hidden gems before turning them into stars.

There might not be a player that emobies this more than Robertson. He went from a relative unknown youngster on a relegated Premier League side to an integral piece on one of the best teams in the world year after year while also being named Captain for Scotland.

Klopp might be gone, but his impact will still live on in the shape of brilliant career arcs like Andy Robertson's.