Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp took on Raymond van Barneveld at darts – and drew

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The Champions League, league titles and still on course for an unprecedented quadruple – Jurgen Klopp knows all about winning.

And while it may not be up there on his list of achievements, he can also claim to have held darts legend Raymond van Barneveld to a draw on the oche, although he needed some help from a fellow German to do it.

Back in 2019, ahead of the PDC World Championships, Sky Sports arranged a special Germany vs Holland darts match-up at Liverpool’s Melwood training base. Klopp was joined on Team Germany by Max Hopp while Van Barneveld’s teammate was Klopp’s assistant, Dutchman Pepjin Lijnders.

The teams competed over three games, with Team Holland winning the first two to take a 2-0 lead. However, Germany hit back in the third, a 501 game worth two points, to secure a sporting draw.

“For me, it’s an away game and a point away from home is always good,” joked the former Borussia Dortmund boss afterwards.

Hopp was asked for his assessment of Klopp’s darting ability. “I’m an honest person, I wouldn’t sign him if I was a darts manager,” he confessed while standing next to the smiling Anfield boss. “There’s room for improvement but what Jurgen has is the winning mentality, which you can see with his club, Liverpool.”

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Meanwhile, Klopp spoke of his respect for the top darts players, and in particular their ability to focus amid a raucous atmosphere at big events like the World Championships.

“We watch it on television. We love watching it. The atmosphere is great, a real party mood,” he said. “For them to be 100 per concentrated on stage, I’ve got a lot of respect.

“I’m really impressed by these types of things, how you can keep the concentration, acting with the crowd on one side and then being fully focused. That’s a great effort and there are similarities to football of course.”

  • Darts
  • Liverpool FC
  • Jurgen Klopp

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