Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has dug back to pre-season in summer of 2022 as one of the root causes for no good, terrible, very bad season his Reds currently find themselves stuck in and says that without a major international tournament to occupy his players this summer an early return for pre-season is on the cards.
That return is expected to be on July 8, more than a month ahead of the August 12 kickoff of the 2023-24 Premier League season. Despite the early return, for many players that will mean a longer holidays than in any season since Covid, though some will have national team commitments into June due to the Nations League.
“It was never a perfect pre-season but that is not the [only] reason for our season now because we had similar pre-seasons before,” Klopp said. “But this year must be different. So now we already have four or five weeks without international football. Usually you play all the time. But it’s different and we have to step up.
“We have to prepare that in the pre-season and that’s why I want them back together as quick as possible, respecting the necessity of holidays. I know that and I respect that and I want them to go on holiday for as long as possible but for this year we have to make sure we are together as soon as possible and can go from there.”
The final date for the Nations League this summer is June 18, and qualifiers will also be on the menu for some following the end of domestic campaigns, but some players will get close to two months away from the game to recover and the minimum break for those with heavy national team commitments will be three weeks.
“Three weeks off at least are possible,” Klopp added. “After that we start back on the 8th and for the [internationals] it will be the 11th. But next season stands above everything. We have three or four days for testing and then training camp in Germany. We can work there with the squad and that is exactly what we need.”