Eddie Howe has pulled off something of a coup in poaching Mark Leyland, Liverpool’s ‘post-match and elite player development analyst’, whom leaves the Reds after eight years on Merseyside.
Manager Jurgen Klopp admitted he was extremely keen on Leyland to stay, but the lure of a more prominent position at Newcastle, combining two roles as a first team coach and analyst, proved too tempting for Leyland to resist – having also worked with Howe before at Burnley, where the two became good friends.
Klopp explained in his pre-match press conference:
“Mark was here longer than me.
“He was an incredibly important member of staff. Top guy.
“But he had the chance to get a more senior role at Newcastle and he was eager to make the next step in his career.”
The hope is that Leyland will ‘bring a complete approach to Newcastle through match preparation.’ Mark revealed all in an interview with Liverpool’s official site:
“We cover all aspects of live match and post-match analysis. Our job after a game revolves around us breaking down the game into team aspects and individual player aspects relating to the manager’s philosophy. We database statistics and video in relation to how the manager wants our team to play – both good things and in areas to improve, then feed that back to players, as individuals and as a team.”
It’s true to say no one can fault Eddie Howe’s attention to detail and NUFC fans will be hoping that Leyland’s meticulous work behind the scenes – and now face to face with our players – will translate into significant improvements on the pitch.
On that subject, Klopp also commented on the positive changes he had already observed due to Howe’s influence:
“More shots, more shots on target, more possession, more offensive things.
“I’ve known Eddie as a colleague a long time now and you can see glimpses of the Bournemouth style.
“A few weeks there and you can see his influence.”
As every Newcastle fan knows, any fixture against Liverpool is a daunting prospect – and given their scintillating form of late, let’s also hope we’ll get a chance to show some of the attributes Klopp has described!