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    Liverpool Players Fitness Concerns

    24 July 2019 | Premier League | Opinion
    1126
    Liverpool Players Fitness Concerns
    Vlad1988 / Shutterstock.com

    The new Premier League season starts on the 9th August with a match between Liverpool and Norwich City at Anfield.  This is a game the team who finished second last season is expected to win comfortably against the newcomers from the Championship.

    However, tricky matches await away to Burnley, at home against Arsenal and away to Chelsea before the end of September. Jurgen Klopp will want his star players available for these fixtures but there is a fear they could be less than 100% fit, even come the end of the month.

    Alisson and Roberto Firmino played in the Copa America and won the tournament with Brazil.  They both played a big role throughout the tournament which did not end until the 7th July.  That means their season was played from the 12th August to the 7th July and that’s a tough schedule.

    That’s nothing compared to the time Sadio Mane has been on the pitch.  Having started his season with Liverpool on the 12th August, Mane represented Senegal in the Africa Cup of Nations and reached the final, only to lose to Algeria.  That match took place on the 19th July meaning Mane’s season, including the last preseason, has lasted for 363 days, which is incredible.

    Mohamed Salah is in a similar situation and the Egyptian international played for Egypt in the Africa Cup of Nations before being eliminated at the Round of 16 stage on the 6th July. Naby Keita was also involved in the competition having come back from injury but his nation, Guinea, were also knocked out at the Round of 16 stage of the tournament.

    Nonetheless, the 2018/19 campaign was gruelling for these players, especially the front three of Liverpool who are so important to the team.  "I don't want to sound like a moaner, but Mane's season has been 13 months long," said Klopp.

    "We have important games to come and we know pretty much which players are available. Hopefully we can go through this period without any injuries and let's prepare the group we have around for the first couple of games. Then Sadio should be in as well and fresh enough to go again."

    Klopp is clearly concerned about the lack of rest his key players have had, especially Mane.

    Mane, Salah and Firmino scored 63% of Liverpool’s goals in the Premier League last season and contributed a great deal to the team in terms of pressing the opposition.  Having also played throughout the summer, there is a huge danger they could suffer from burnout this season and that’s a big concern for Liverpool.

    Harry Wilson, Rhian Brewster, Ryan Kent and Divock Origi have been playing in Liverpool’s preseason games and while the former has been the most impressive, the Welshman is not at the same level as the first choice front three.

    The absence of Salah, Mane and Firmino could be costly for Liverpool this season as the players try and come to terms with their long schedule.

    Predictions for Premier League

    Home team - Away team Forebet
    flag_1 EPL
    LiverpoolWatford
    14/12/2019 13:30
    1
    flag_1 EPL
    BurnleyNewcastle United
    14/12/2019 16:00
    2
    flag_1 EPL
    ChelseaBournemouth
    14/12/2019 16:00
    1
    flag_1 EPL
    Leicester CityNorwich City
    14/12/2019 16:00
    1

    England Premier League - predictions, tips, statistics
    OVERALL TABLE PTS GP W D L GF GA +/-
    1. Liverpool 46 16 15 1 0 40 14 26
    2. Leicester City 38 16 12 2 2 39 10 29
    3. Manchester City 32 16 10 2 4 44 19 25
    4. Chelsea 29 16 9 2 5 31 24 7
    5. Manchester United 24 16 6 6 4 25 19 6
    6. Wolverhampton 24 16 5 9 2 23 19 4
    7. Tottenham 23 16 6 5 5 30 23 7
    8. Sheffield United 22 16 5 7 4 19 16 3
    9. Arsenal 22 16 5 7 4 24 24 0
    10. Crystal Palace 22 16 6 4 6 14 18 -4
    11. Newcastle United 22 16 6 4 6 17 23 -6
    12. Brighton 19 16 5 4 7 20 24 -4
    13. Burnley 18 16 5 3 8 21 29 -8
    14. Everton 17 16 5 2 9 19 28 -9
    15. Bournemouth 16 16 4 4 8 18 24 -6
    16. West Ham 16 16 4 4 8 18 28 -10
    17. Aston Villa 15 16 4 3 9 23 28 -5
    18. Southampton 15 16 4 3 9 18 35 -17
    19. Norwich City 11 16 3 2 11 17 34 -17
    20. Watford 9 16 1 6 9 9 30 -21

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