Why Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has been branded a “strange bloke” by referee Mark Clattenburg

The former Premier League official also claimed the Reds chief tried to stare him down before a game.

<p>Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp talks to referee Mark Clattenburg. Picture:  PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images</p>

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp talks to referee Mark Clattenburg. Picture: PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has been branded a "strange bloke" - by former Premier League referee Mark Clattenburg.

And the official claimed the German once tried to intimidate him before a game.

'Sour loser'

Clattenburg took charge of five Reds matches while Klopp was in the hot seat before he left England for the Saudi Arabian Football Federation in February 2017.

However, their first meeting came when Klopp was manager of Borussia Dortmund, with his then side suffering a 3-0 Champions League loss to Real Madrid at the Santiago Bernabeau in April 2014.

Clattenburg claimed Klopp made a sarcastic comment after posing for a picture with Madrid defender Marcelo following the clash.

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In an extract from his soon-to-be-released autobiography Whistle Blower, which is being serialised by the Daily Mail, Clattenburg said: “Jurgen Klopp. Brilliant manager. Sour loser.

“I first came across him in April 2014. His Borussia Dortmund side lost 3-0 at Real Madrid in a Champions League quarter-final first leg.

Jurgen Klopp yells at his Dortmund side during their loss to Real Madrid in April 2014. Picture: GERARD JULIEN/AFP via Getty Images

“After the game, I came out of my dressing room and Real defender Marcelo and his wife asked for a picture. It was a private picture on their phone so I said yeah, no problem.

“Klopp walked past just as the photo was being taken. 'Oh, so that’s why we got beat, is it?' he said. He was not being humorous or friendly, he was being sarky.

‘You’re lucky you only got beat 3-0,’ I said. The fact we were in Madrid probably gave me a bit of bravado to answer back.

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“It annoyed me when managers could not be gracious in defeat.

“Klopp never took losing well. When he was winning he was happy, he was good fun. When things were not going his way, he got prickly.”

Dressing-room staredown

Clattenburg's final meeting with Klopp came in January 2017 when Liverpool drew 1-1 with Chelsea at Anfield.

Before the clash, the Durham-born referee said that Klopp "stared at me for about 30 seconds" in the dressing room.

He said: "My final game with Klopp was in January 2017 against Chelsea at Anfield. Managers rarely came into my dressing room for the exchange of team sheets an hour before kick-off. On this occasion, Klopp came in with Jordan Henderson.

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“It was bizarre, he stood and stared at me for about 30 seconds. I just stared back at him. I could see Jordan was a bit like: ‘What the hell’s going on?’

“Did Klopp think I was stupid? I was not going to be bullied by him. He left and all I thought was: What a strange bloke.”