Liverpool will be without starting goalkeeper Alisson Becker or star holding midfielder Fabinho Tavares for their trip to take on Watford in Premier League action on Saturday with the duo returning late from international duty with Brazil.
The Premier League rejected Liverpool’s request to push the game back even just to the evening of Saturday, and as such it will kick off at 12:30PM local time, less than 36 hours after Brazil take on Uruguay in a World Cup qualifying match.
In Spain, on the other hand, the situation—late returning players from CONMEBOL World Cup qualifiers—has led to a different reaction. In Spain, La Liga have chosen to postpone two of this weekend’s biggest matches because of it.
That includes the match of Liverpool’s mid-week Champions League opponents, Atletico Madrid, who had been set to play away at Granada. That game, as well as Real Madrid’s against Athletic Bilbao, will no longer be played this weekend.
Instead, they will be rescheduled for a later date. Similar steps were taken following the September international break, and in the past the Spanish league have tended to be more willing to move matches to account for other competitions.
England, meanwhile, seem determined to act as though there is only one competition in the world, the Premier League, and to reject even the idea that they should move an inch to make things easier for their players and clubs in others.
However, with La Liga postponing games following back-to-back international breaks and not simply pushing their kickoff times back, there is the possibility that it could lead to increased fixture congestion for the clubs down the road.