Jurgen Klopp aims attack at TV broadcasters: 'If you don't talk, we might not finish the season'

The German coach clearly laid out his message that the fixture scheduling in this season is damaging the wellness of his players

8:00am on Monday 23rd November 2020
Paul Macdonald

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp sent a very clear and cogent message to football broadcasters in the UK, BT Sports and Sky Sports, that the scheduling of matches has to change for the well-bring of players.

Klopp's side have been hit particularly hard with injuries in the past month, and Naby Keita was the latest concern for him, limping off in the 3-0 win over Leicester on Sunday evening.

Keita adds to an injury list which already includes Virgil van Dijk, Joe Gomez, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Jordan Henderson, Thiago Alcantara, Mo Salah and a number of others.

And speaking to Sky Sports afterwards in a discussion that wasn't initially broadcast, Klopp aimed his ire at the 12.30pm kick-off on a Saturday as the one which allows players minimal preparation time and is therefore increasing the likelihood of injury incidence.

Klopp calmly and clearly laid out his concerns to reporter Geoff Shreeves, stating: "We make changes late in games because we could end the game with nine players [if there's an injury]. That's the truth and nothing else.

"This is about all the players, the England players, who could play at the Euros next summer, if you don't start talking to BT, we are done. If you don't talk to BT and Sky, we are done. Because if we keep playing Wednesday and Saturday 12.30, I'm not sure we finish the season with 11 players, but I know you don't care."

Klopp said that he felt he had to speak out but feels that nothing has happened when the issue has been raised before. This weekend the Championship fell in line with the majority of other major European leagues in introducing five substitutions for this season, but the Premier League is yet to follow suit.

The German added: "We discussed this for a long time, and nothing happened. It's difficult for the players, that's what's difficult. It's not about us, whenever I say anything, [they say] he talks about Liverpool. I don't talk about Liverpool. I talk about the football players out there.

"Yesterday, [Gerard] Pique, massive knee injury. Today, [Bukayo] Saka, I'm not sure but looks like a knee injury. He played all three games for England.

"And now people tell us to rotate. Who? Offensive players we could rotate, but the rest, is just kids."

It is understood that further talks will take place this week among Premier League clubs with a view to reassessing the five-sub decision.

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