Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says he wants to start a discussion about the length of the summer break from football in England, saying "somebody has to think about the players and obviously nobody is doing it."
The Merseyside club's season ended on June 1st with their sixth Champions League title, beating Tottenham Hotspur in the final at the Wanda Metropolitano in Madrid. Their first pre-season game took place on July 11th away to Tranmere. While tomorrow their season begins in earnest at Wembley when they take on Manchester City in the Community Shield.
Speaking ahead of the game, Jurgen Klopp said, "somebody has to start it. I spoke yesterday with Carlo Ancelotti - Italy has 20 teams as well and starts the season on the 24th of August. The 24th. Koulibaly who played together with Sadio at the African Cup of Nations, he's had four weeks holiday, he's not even close to coming back.
"I don't know why we start that early. I don't know why, and the Premier League is such a wonderful product that everyone will watch it anyway, whoever plays and we don't need these two weeks where nobody is playing in the whole world, only England, and then you can watch the Premier League."
The 52-year-old German said more attention needs to paid in particular to years where there are international competitions taking place during the summer, meaning key players will have shorter breaks. However, Klopp did not want to be criticised for his stance:
"I'm not like this," the Liverpool manager said. "I love football, I want to play. From my point of view, we can play every week. I love it. Somebody has to think about players and obviously, nobody is doing it. From time to time, I start a discussion, but then it's like 'oh he's looking for excuses'. I don't. I don't, especially not for me. But we have to think about the players."
Liverpool's Premier League campaign starts on August 9th when they welcome Norwich City to Anfield.