Liverpool’s underwhelming pre-season performances continued on Sunday when they fell to Napoli by the score of 3-0. Of course, the pre-season doesn’t count, nor does it reflect much about how the upcoming season will play out. But it has shown us that there’s plenty of work still to be done if the Reds want to mount a proper title challenge.
The next stop for the pre-season is Evian, where Klopp has taken a 29-man squad to do some training before their friendly against Lyon and then the Community Shield game against Manchester City.
Klopp emphasized the importance of this final push for fitness, which will see him reunited with stars Sadio Mane, Alisson Becker, Mohamed Salah, and Roberto Firmino, who will return to the team.
“[It’s] massively important. We’re looking forward to it, absolutely,” he said.
“We got the information a couple of seconds ago that everybody’s fine, everybody’s coming in time, they got their flights and everything so from this afternoon on Shaq, Naby, Bobby, Mo and Alisson will be in training, which is great.”
While the Community Shield is the first big game of the season, Klopp insists that the Evian training isn’t only to prepare for the Premier League rivals.
“We didn’t know in that moment it will be important for Shaq and Naby as well, but apart from that we have to prepare still the season and not only the game on Sunday, but of course the game on Sunday is the first proper game of the new season and so we try to be as good prepared as possible.”
Signs point to another tight battle at the top between Manchester City and Liverpool this season, so all eyes will be on this weekend’s game as the footballing world gets its first taste of what these two powerhouse teams can bring to the table. It will help set the tone for the campaign to come. And it would be good to start this new season the way last season ended: with Jordan Henderson hoisting another trophy victoriously in the air.