For Liverpool fans, the holiday period presents an exciting stretch of seemingly nonstop football action. Rather than the once-a-week pace that exists for much of the campaign, this time of year features many matches in a short time frame.
That can be difficult for players, though. In a Reds side that plays with boundless intensity each contest, this is an especially tiresome point of the season.
James Milner, who has experienced December fixture congestion throughout his career, offered a look into how the team is handling things as it prepares to face Stoke City, Manchester City and Sunderland in an upcoming seven day stretch.
“I think you’ve just got to rest as much as you can and you know, life changes as well,” Milner said (via the club website). “The foreign boys have got families coming in, obviously everybody’s excited for Christmas about you and people are finishing for work and things like that, so you have to make sure you’re concentrated.
“Obviously enjoy it with the kids and the family as well, but you always have to have one eye on the game and make sure you’re eating the right things and getting the sleep you need and things like that.”
Milner went on to label the schedule “pretty ridiculous” but said player morale is high following a win over Everton. That victory, he said, can propel the team to a positive home showing tomorrow against Stoke City.
“The atmosphere’s always special at Anfield,” Milner said. “Hopefully everyone will have enjoyed their Christmas, especially after the derby result, and they’ll be in good spirits so hopefully that’ll drive us on to a good performance there and help set us up for the next few weeks.”