Cody Gakpo Shatters Jurgen Klopp’s Unspoken Code Right Before Showdown with Everton
In a bold move that raised eyebrows and ignited chatter among football enthusiasts, Cody Gakpo, the Dutch sensation, dared to defy one of Jurgen Klopp’s sacred ‘golden rules’ just before the high-stakes Liverpool vs Everton clash in January 2023.
The anticipation was already palpable as Gakpo, fresh from his £44 million move from PSV Eindhoven to Anfield, stepped onto the pitch for one of his early matches with Liverpool. However, it wasn’t his prowess on the field that stole the spotlight; instead, it was a seemingly innocuous act that caught the attention of eagle-eyed fans.
In a departure from Klopp’s directive, Gakpo was spotted touching the iconic ‘This Is Anfield’ sign as he made his entrance. Klopp, known for his meticulous instructions, had previously emphasized to his players the importance of refraining from such actions until they had earned it through victory, deeming it a sign of respect.
The German manager had explicitly stated, “I’ve told my players not to touch the ‘This Is Anfield’ sign until they win something. It’s a sign of respect.” This tradition was echoed by midfielder Thiago Alcantara in 2020, emphasizing that touching the symbol required deserving it by winning trophies.
Gakpo’s deviation from this established norm has sparked discussions among fans and pundits alike, with speculation on whether he will be officially permitted to touch the revered sign should Liverpool emerge victorious in the upcoming Carabao Cup final against Chelsea at Wembley.
As Liverpool continues its pursuit of glory in the Premier League, FA Cup, and Europa League, the outcome of these competitions may dictate whether Gakpo, like his predecessors, gets the green light to embrace the ‘This Is Anfield’ tradition.
Reflecting on his journey with Liverpool, Gakpo expressed his contentment, saying, “A year with obviously really good moments, some lesser-good moments, but I’m happy to be here and hopefully beautiful moments to come. I really feel at home, and I think the club is amazing. It’s like a big family. The supporters are amazing every game and show love to all of us. I appreciate it and I love being here.”
As Liverpool gears up to face Burnley in the Premier League this weekend, the narrative surrounding Gakpo’s bold gesture adds an intriguing layer to the ongoing football drama at Anfield.