Jack Charlton and Billy Bremner were awful in training | John Giles


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Will O'Callaghan
Will O'Callaghan

21.07 8 Apr 2021


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Republic of Ireland legend John Giles believes players have to picked on their performances in matches rather than their showings in training. 

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp revealed this week that he picked Naby Keita to start in Tuesday's loss to Real Madrid in the Champions League because he had been ‘outstanding’ in training.

Klopp would go on the substitute the Guinean midfielder before half-time in the 3-1 defeat in the Spanish capital, which leaves the Reds with an uphill task to reach the last-four of the competition.

"Never believed in it," Giles said on tonight's Off The Ball when asked about managers selecting a player based purely on their performances in training rather than match form.

"I've seen lads in my time, where they're great in training and they come on a Saturday and they don't do it. I had experience of it with the great Leeds team.

"Jack Charlton and Billy Bremner were two of the worst trainers you'd see in your life! Bremner would do a circuit around the ground, he thought the track was only for show rather than running and big Jack wasn't the best either.

"Give Bremner a ball and then he was buzzing around the place and on a Saturday he'd be buzzing around like nobody's business. But if you saw him in training you'd think, 'I'd never play that fella'.

"When they got out on the pitch on the weekend when it mattered, that's when you saw them. I've seen where people have been judged on how they train and it worked - it's what you do on the pitch. I've heard of bad trainers at clubs and then they go out in a match and are brilliant.

"Klopp took him before half-time, I'm actually surprised that such an experienced and brilliant manager could be so impressed by a player in training."

OTB ARCHIVE | JOHN GILES REVISITS THE GLORY DAYS OF ON-PITCH 'VERBALS'


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