Soccer

Jürgen Klopp lashes out over homophobic chants, calling fans ‘idiots’

Jürgen Klopp has strongly condemned the Liverpool supporters who directed homophobic chants at the Norwich midfielder Billy Gilmour, calling them “idiots”.

Liverpool won 3-0 at Carrow Road on Saturday in their opening Premier League game of the season but the victory was marred by chants aimed at Gilmour, on loan at Norwich from Chelsea. Choruses of “Chelsea rent boy” could be heard from the away section with Liverpool quick to condemn the chants after the game, labelling them “offensive and inappropriate”.

Klopp sat down with Paul Amann, the founder of Liverpool LGBT+ fans group Kop Outs, on Thursday to express his disappointment at the abuse and called on supporters to stop the songs. “I never understand why you would sing a song if it was against something in a football stadium,” Klopp said in an interview on Liverpool’s official Twitter.

“I never got that. I never liked it. In our case we have probably the best songbook in the world. It’s easy to decide not to sing the song any more. So, we can decide now, this is not our song any more, so I’m not sure if people listen to me but it would be nice.

“I don’t want to hear it any more, for so many reasons. We obviously live in a time where we learn a lot in the moment. I’m 54 now and when I was 20 we said so many things which we didn’t think about. And meanwhile, thank God 34 years later we learned it’s just not right to say.”

Klopp also underlined the chants do nothing for the team, calling them a “waste of time”.

“From a player or coach perspective, I can see these songs don’t help as well as it’s like a waste of time,” he said. “It’s definitely a waste of time because I hear in the stadium when they start singing Bobby Firmino, Mo Salah, You’ll Never Walk Alone. This kind of stuff gives you goosebumps and a push. The other songs are completely a waste of time and if you think [believe] what you sing, you are an idiot.

“If you don’t think about what you’re singing in that situation it’s just a waste of time, forget it and go for another song.”

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