What is now last season, we can conclusively say, was a lot.
Liverpool were pretty much run into the ground by March, then completely rebounded for a strong finish. After being condensed by a month due to the pandemic, it was always going to be pretty physically intense for the players. A great number of them haven’t even finished yet, with the European Championships and Copa America competitions taking place this summer.
In that light, it makes perfect sense to give everyone another week’s holiday. Which is exactly what’s happening. The Liverpool Echo report that Jürgen Klopp is not requesting the players back until the 12th July, a full week after the usual routine. Preseason business will then begin as normal, though without the exotic tours in the pandemic era.
This feels like a no brainer to me. The schedule is utterly brutal right now. We’ve had a condensed full season followed by summer tournaments, followed by a normal full season, then a shortened summer break, then a season with a whole World Cup right in the middle. Any bit of rest players can get will be invaluable in the long haul, and surely worth more than another week of preseason training.
It’s going to be another physically demanding year. It’s going to need a lot of careful planning and preparation to keep everyone going at a good standard all season long. While no one expects another injury situation like we had last season, it’s certainly an area the club must keep an eye on. The easiest way to protect against this is not to overwork players, so it’s great this is being taken into consideration.