England ace took pay-cut to quit Gunners in £35m deadline day move and admits chance to work with German was clincher
The England midfielder turned down a mega £180k-a-week contract extension with Arsenal before signing for the Reds in a £35million deal on deadline day.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain reveals he chose to join Liverpool to work with Jurgen Klopp
Oxlade-Chamberlain featured in England’s qualifiers against Malta and Slovakia this month
Oxlade-Chamberlain took a whopping 33 per cent pay-cut to move to Anfield, having also snubbed a more lucrative deal at Chelsea.
And the former Southampton kid, 24, admits it was the prospect of working with Klopp that made up his mind.
Speaking to Liverpool’s official website, he said: “Even as a neutral watching him [Klopp] last season, you could see he’s a really interesting character – someone that seems very inspiring for people that aren’t even involved in the club.
“Watching him, (you see) his passion and how much he cares about the game.
“The thing that stood out for me was his relationship with the players, how close he seems to bond with the players on and off the field.
“That’s massive and it’s definitely a big plus when you’re looking to progress, having that relationship with the manager, that definitely helps.
Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool spent £35million to take Oxlade-Chamberlain to Anfield on deadline day
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s progress had stalled at Arsenal under Arsene Wenger
“And then obviously the way his teams play, that’s definitely inspirational for me and was one of the instrumental (reasons) – if not the main reason – that I felt this place was definitely the place for me.”
Oxlade-Chamberlain – who could make his Liverpool debut against Manchester City on Saturday lunchtime – had started all four of Arsenal’s games so far this season.
But his progress had appeared to have stalled at the Emirates under Wenger, having been played out of position at wing-back.
England football squad including Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain train in preparation for qualifier against Malta
Arsene Wenger suffered a nightmare transfer window after Arsenal’s poor start in the Premier League
Oxlade-Chamberlain sees his future as a central midfielder, and revealed he thinks Klopp is the right boss to turn his career in the right direction.
He added: “I felt like he was the man I’d want to come and play for because I feel like he could really push me and hopefully get the best out of me and take me to the next level, for sure.
“Even when he was at Borussia Dortmund, you see these things from the outside when you look at managers and the way they work.
Oxlade-Chamberlain has been a fan of Jurgen Klopp since his time at Dortmund
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“He’s definitely a manager that’s very animated on the side and you sort of feel like you get to know him without even knowing him when you listen to him in his press conferences – and then the insights I’ve had from the boys on him.
“First of all, what he’s achieved, you respect that straight away and how much he knows about the game, and then all his extra attributes – his relationships with the players and how he pushes you, encourages you and what he demands from you – that’s like a bonus.
“That’s what makes him special in my eyes.”