Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp laid the foundation for his evisceration of Sky Sports days earlier.
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Klopp took TV broadcasters to task for the fixture scheduling faced by his Premier League champions and other English clubs in European competition after beating Leicester on Sunday.
The Reds thrashed Brendan Rodgers’ side at Anfield despite a number of key absences, with Naby Keita also succumbing to injury early in the second half as the influx of games and questionable kick-off times have started to take their toll.
“If we keep playing on Wednesday and Saturday 12.30, I’m not sure if you’ll finish the season with 11 players,” Klopp said. “All the top six are the same. All the top six and seven. But I know [broadcasters] don’t care, and that’s the problem.”
The Athletic claim that Klopp almost embarked on a similar line of argument after his pre-match press conference on Friday.
It is said that the Liverpool manager ‘finished speaking to the written press in a bit of a huff by asking journalists why nobody had asked him about the Premier League’s managers’ meeting’ earlier in the week.
Klopp had given an exclusive interview to the Daily Mail in which he aired his grievances further about a number of issues, including the five-substitutes rule.
“This now is not a normal season,” he said. “This now is a season which is four weeks shorter but with the same amount of games. This is a very special time, not only for football but for the whole world. All of us have to dig in and fight hard to get through it.
“In football, it’s like this. It looks like the whole world changed but the two things which stayed were the fixture list of the Premier League and three subs.
“These are the two things we have to talk about. We have to talk to the broadcasters. People need to understand football players. People say: ‘Oh, but they earn this much.’ It’s not about that. They earn that much because they are so special.”
Not being asked more about those quotes seemed to frustrate Klopp, who proceeded to take Sky Sports to task a couple of days later.