Jurgen Klopp set for bigger say on transfers as Liverpool sporting director Julian Ward quits

The Reds boss will play a pivotal role in how the club move forward.

Liverpool’s sporting director Julian Ward will leave the club at the end of the season after only a year in charge.

Ward stepped up from assistant sporting director to succeeded his boss Michael Edwards, who oversaw the Reds’ much vaunted recent success in the transfer market, in the summer.

Ward, 41, helped oversee the arrival of Darwin Núñez (€80m),  Fábio Carvalho (€5.9m), Calvin Ramsay (€4.9m) and Arthur Melo (€4.5m loan) during the last transfer window, although the club were criticised for failing to bolster an ageing midfield following a poor start to the Premier League season.

Ward has been at the club for more than a decade and his unexpected decision is understood to have been greeted with disappointment within the club, who will now decide whether to continue with the sporting director model.

ESPN report that with the club currently up for sale, owners Fenway Sports Group (FSG) are unlikely to replace Ward until a new buyer is found, meaning Jurgen Klopp will take on further responsibility for player recruitment in a manager-led structure.

Head of recruitment, Dave Fallows, and chief scout, Barry Hunter, will continue to have a central roles in transfer strategy.

Klopp, who recently extended his contract until 2026, has seen plenty of change at the club in the past few months, with the owners putting the club up for sale and now Liverpool’s transfers structure set for an overhaul. FSG president Mike Gordan has also taken a step back, with chief executive Billy Hogan assuming more responsibilty.

Mohamed Salah of Liverpool signs a contract extension with Ramy Abbas Issa, Jonathan Bamber and Julian Ward, while on holiday on June 19, 2022 in Mykonos, Greece. Image: Nick Taylor/Liverpool FC/Liverpool FC via Getty Images