Not for the first time nor the last time, Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has voiced his profound bewilderment over a year-end Premier League schedule that will see the Reds - among others - play two matches in three days. After hosting Leicester City on the 30th of December, Liverpool will travel to Burnley - who may or may not be led by Sean Dyche at that point - on New Year’s Day.
In particular, Klopp has questioned (with his usual dose of sass) the need to schedule matches on the 1st of January, seemingly for no good reason other than a desire to adhere to tradition.
“Is there a reason why nobody plays in the midweek in the first week of January?” asked the manager. “They put us on the 30th of December and 1st of January but they could easily play all the games on the 3rd or 4th January.
“Is it not possible to play then? Is there another bonfire day or something like this? Why is it? Does anyone know?”
As Klopp also pointed out, the league can’t even point to television rights as a rationale for the fixture jam.
“You can't watch our match against Burnley on television so do you need a holiday to watch it on Match of the Day?” said Klopp. “If it's on television, then ok, we signed the contract, we do it. But why can we not play on Tuesday? It's crazy.”
We, and lots of other managers across the league, agree.