Liverpool on Thursday were crowned the champions of the English Premier League for the first time in 30 years after Chelsea beat Manchester City in an EPL tie. Manager Jurgen Klopp has built one of the best squads in world football and the German has been praised for the club’s on-field success in recent years. However, it is instructive to note the impressive performance of those people who are working behind-the-scenes whose contribution has been invaluable in the club’s roller coaster ride in recent seasons.
Andreas Kornmayer, Head of fitness and conditioning
The physicality of football means that athletes must be structurally strong and conditioned to compete safely and for this reason, Kornmayer was poached from Bayern Munich in 2016 as Klopp sought to overhaul Liverpool’s fitness regime to match his own demands. He had spent 15 years at Bayern and Klopp had identified him as the man to assist in his journey to make Liverpool the biggest club in the world. Klopp trusts his players to recover the right way by giving them a day off after matches but Kornmayer ensured at least a 45-minute massage on players along with light exercise and gym work, ranging from core work to jogging round the pitch or time on the bike, or in the swimming pool. With most players having access to this kind of equipment at home, the Kornmayer’s team now tend to go round to see each player individually and provide the massage. Players are also increasingly inclined to take up one-on-one fitness sessions from Kornmayer and his team.
Mona Nemmer, Head of nutrition
Diet has the biggest impact on training; it affects performance and the foods are chosen by players in training and competition will affect how well they will play and are trained. With Liverpool’s hectic schedule, nutrition is paramount to fuelling players with the right foods to go about their business and Nemmer has tremendously transformed the players’ diet. The German specialist joined Liverpool in 2016 from Bayern Munich and was also in charge of nutrition for Germany’s U-21 team. She has brought some transformational change this term; Liverpool’s players would previously have cold sandwiches after matches, or even head out for a Nando’s when the main stand was under re-construction. But Nemmer now informs the club kitchens what should be on the menus for the players. Nemmer has also ensured that the eating areas are busy with informational posters and messages detailing the value of consuming the correct food groups like proteins and carbohydrates. Now there is even an add-on to the home dressing room at Anfield filled with pasta and rice stations where players can stock up after games, and even take food home.
Philipp Jacobsen – Medical Rehabilitation and Performance Manager
Philipp Jacobsen was appointed Liverpool’s new medical rehabilitation and performance manager ahead of the 2018-19 season. The German heads up the Melwoodbased medical team alongside Dr Andrew Massey. He joined the club from the Qatar-based orthopaedic and sports medicine hospital, Aspetar. Jacobsen worked as Aspetar’s senior physio from 2007 to 2015 before moving on to work with the Qatar national team until 2017. He then took on a lead role and headed a specialist team assigned to the care of elite foreign athletes visiting Aspetar – mostly from football and athletics. He previously worked in football with Greek giants Panathinaikos, serving as the club’s head physio between 2001 and 2004, and joined Portsmouth in 2005.
Christopher Rohrbeck , First-Team Physiotherapist
Christopher Rohrbeck joined Liverpool as first-team physiotherapist in 2017. Rohrbeck made the move to Merseyside after 14 years with German club FSV Mainz, where he had previously worked with Jürgen Klopp during the Reds manager’s spell at the helm there.