Northern Ireland news

Jurgen Klopp wishes directors of An Irish Goodbye ‘good luck' at the Oscars

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp (Peter Byrne/PA)
Alex Green, PA Acting Deputy Entertainment Editor

Jurgen Klopp has wished the directors of Oscar-nominated film An Irish Goodbye “good luck” at the event, and invited them to his office to admire each other's trophies.

The dark comedy set on a farm in Northern Ireland has already won best British short film at the Baftas, and could scoop the Oscar for best live action short film.

Ross White, who alongside Tom Berkeley directed the feature, shared a video message sent to him by Liverpool manager Klopp in which he brandished a statuette of Bill Shankly, a former boss at the club, with an inscription reading “He made the people happy”.

He captioned the video: “Team talk from the gaffer ahead of today's #Oscars @TheAcademy

“Huge thanks to the legend that is Jurgen Klopp for taking the time and to my amazing Dad for pestering @LFC to make this happen.”

In the clip, Klopp exclaims “and the Oscar goes to” before adding: “Congratulations for what you have already achieved. Winning a Bafta award is massive.”

Klopp added that despite not being in the film industry he watched a lot of movies “so I am on the other side of the screen and I admire good film-makers a lot”.

“If Ross especially – I think he is a Liverpool supporter – wants to touch this once, he is invited to my office and then we can maybe exchange,” he added.

“No, I would never give that away but at least we can touch. You can touch this, I can touch the Oscar.

“So I wish you all the very, very best. Good luck and don't forget, you will never walk alone.”

An Irish Goodbye tells a story of two estranged brothers – one with Down's syndrome, played by James Martin – who come together after their mother's death to try to fulfil their mother's “bucket list” with her ashes before they sell off the family farm.

It was shot on location in Derry, Templepatrick and Saintfield and also stars Seamus O'Hara, Paddy Jenkins and Michelle Fairley.