In the midst of an injury crisis in the midst of a compressed season, Liverpool face a difficult test on Wednesday evening against Atalanta that could help to define their campaign.
For manager Jürgen Klopp, it’s a situation that means that every player on the squad must be ready to play their part—whether it’s in the game tonight or in the weeks ahead.
“It is so important that every player recognises their importance,” he noted in the matchday programme. “In this season, more than any other, every member of our group will play a role if we are to achieve anything.
“It has always been the case with us, but the circumstances around us in this moment makes it even more so. As difficult as it has been recently, it does present an amazing opportunity.”
Win tonight and, while the schedule may not get any easier, it would at least make it easier for Klopp to rest and rotate in the final two Champions League group stage games.
Win tonight and Liverpool will be assured of a place in the knockout rounds of the Champions League and be able to turn their full focus for the next month or two to defending their league title.
It will be tough, but this is a group that has shown just how good they are over the past few seasons—and has proven they can deal with adversity.
“We are going to need all our qualities from now until May,” the Liverpool manager added. “We will need to squeeze from ourselves more than we have ever done previously.
“I have complete faith in our group, from the most experienced player through to our youngest. Our performances so far, in the face of adversity, shows me these boys believe in what we do but more importantly they believe in each other.
“It is clear nothing is going to change externally to make this more tolerable for the athletes. But they have us to help and support and they have each other for inspiration.”