By 90Min
January 21, 2019

Zeljko Buvac has officially left his position as assistant manager at Liverpool following an nine-month absence.

Buvac has not been seen since his departure before the Reds' Champions League semi-final against Roma due to 'personal reasons', although reports at the time suggested a falling out between Klopp and his long-time assistant.

Ian MacNicol/GettyImages

Despite Klopp's refusal to discuss the absence of his number two, while the Liverpool Echo report that Buvac 'had become increasingly distant' in the weeks before his exit.

According to the Echo, the Bosnian-Serb - who had technically remained an employee at Anfield for the last nine months despite his absence - has finally settled his contract with the club and his exit is now official.

Buvac had a long and successful history with the current Liverpool manager in the Bundesliga, following him from Mainz 05 to Borussia Dortmund in 2008 before the switch to Merseyside in 2015. The 57-year-old helped Dortmund to back-to-back league titles in 2011 and 2012 and guided them to their second Champions League final in 2013.

After the fallout last year, Buvac was even rumoured to be in line to replace Arsene Wenger as Arsenal manager.

Clive Brunskill/GettyImages

Having lost the man he once dubbed 'The Brain' of his infamous 'heavy metal' style of football, Klopp reinstated former assistant manager Pep Lijnders in June 2018 following a four-month spell as manager of NEC Nijmegen. 

Lijnders was sacked by the Dutch club after failing to gain promotion to the Eredivisie and he is now expected to officially fill the vacancy after Buvac's exit, which officially brings an end to his leave of absence and to a 17-year working relationship with Klopp. 

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