Liverpool are the primary contenders to win the Premier League title and that, in itself, is the best Christmas present of all for Reds fans. They’re riding high ahead of Leicester City and Manchester City who are their closest challengers, to the point where very few people can actually imagine a scenario in which they manage to mess it up.
As reported by BBC and The Guardian, the next available opportunity for them to do so comes this weekend as they prepare to host Brighton & Hove Albion. It’s bound to be a tricky game with Graham Potter really reigniting the flame of this team’s character and spirit, to the point where it wouldn’t be all too surprising to imagine them finishing in the top half this season.
Getting over the finish line
In addition to that, though, as reported by Liverpool Echo, there are other things that Jurgen Klopp needs to worry about – such as the utterly insane schedule his squad is about to endure.
“It is [difficult] for all of us. Do we have a game or two more than others?
“I don’t know exactly because I don’t know the schedule of other teams but I think because some play in the League Cup as well, we play the same amount of games as teams still in that, so we are not alone out there in that part.
“We are not the only team with that kind of schedule, but it is all OK. I was in Manchester (on Sunday) and I was sat next to (England manager) Gareth Southgate. He told me in 1993 they played on the 26th and 27th. That is not 50 years ago!
“So, obviously you (in England) have always liked these funny schedules.
Strong & stable
“Someone decides we have to do it, so we do it. We cannot change it, so we don’t think too much about it. In the beginning, it was really surprisingly intense, but now we are used to it.
“We have to deal with it because it is not easy and you need a bit of luck with injuries, but it is very important and I have a lot of decisions about who is ready and not.”
The schedule will include playing two games within the span of one day, with the Club World Cup colliding with Liverpool’s Carabao Cup tie against Aston Villa.
Regardless of what you think of the club from a personal standpoint, there’s no way of getting around the fact that this whole situation is just a little bit ridiculous. Still, Klopp is the kind of manager that just takes it in his stride, to the point where you just know he’s going to be absolutely fine by the time the games in question roll around.
There’s a real sense of hope in the city that they can pull off something special, and Klopp is a huge part of that. The squad obviously is too, but really, it’s the fans that have been able to drive this renewed belief.