He may not have been in the job for a full six months yet, but Jürgen Klopp has already taken charge of 38 matches as Liverpool manager. That equates to a match every 4 days between the time he made his managerial debut against Everton up until Sunday's devastating loss to Southampton. It is a massive run of fixtures, made all the more difficult by the lack of a pre-season with his players, and the rash of hamstring injuries that plagued the squad during the winter months.
While the international break is generally loathed by fans due to the lack of compelling match action as well as the fear of players returning from international duty with injuries, it might come as a boon for Liverpool's German manager. He may not have most of his starting XI available, and those who aren't away with their national sides have been left back at Melwood due to injury, but the chance for players and manager to decompress without the burden of another match just around the corner could be just the break they need.
Not that Klopp is taking the trip as any sort of vacation, mind:
“There is still so much to play for.
“April will be busy but we are used to playing this many games.
“We will have to make some hard decisions over the line-up. Before Southampton, we had [Roberto] Firmino out and Hendo ill – that can be a problem.
“We have a big squad so it’s good for us to have this many games in April. Everyone will be important. We have to really fight through this time.
“There are no easy games. But if we are all together then you have seen how we can play.”
With a minimum of 8 and a possible 9 games in 30 days in April, it is definitely a busy month, and one that is likely to test the depth of the squad. Getting some extra time to work with the second string might be just the thing that pushes the team through in tough matches where first teamers will be unavailable due to fatigue, injury or suspension. Given how the international break has started in that regard, they might be needed sooner than anticipated.