Jurgen Klopp is getting his first taste of England’s busy winter schedule, as the Liverpool boss is trying to juggle the Premier League with FA Cup and Capital One Cup matches.
After managing in Germany where there is a month-long winter break, Klopp has been outspoken about the schedule in England.
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With Liverpool hit by the injury bug in one of the busiest parts of the year, as Klopp has been forced to dig deep into his reserves in his first season at Anfield.
When asked if he had any advice for Pep Guardiola, who will be leaving Bayern Munich for England at the end of the season, Klopp warned Pep of the hectic fixtures list.
I don’t have to tell Pep Guardiola anything because he is that experienced. [But] the number of games is the biggest difference. When I came here, I didn’t know there were two rounds in the semi-final of the Capital One Cup. I had people in Germany last week saying: ‘Yeah, you’re in the final again!’ Idiots!
In Germany, when you tell people about the FA Cup that if you draw you play again they say: ‘What?’ Here you have penalties and extra time, but only after the second game. That’s the thing, the number of games – football, football, football. With a perfect pre-season you are prepared for a long, long journey.
We knew about it, but to feel it is different. Pep is so experienced, for sure. I’m sure he will buy a few players and have a good team, have 35 players or whatever.
When asked about the current injury crisis at Liverpool, Klopp said he has had to deal with similar situations before, but with the winter break, it was easier to navigate.
Guardiola is yet to announce what club he will join next summer, although Manchester City is the heavy favorite. Pep will have to balance all the rigors of the Premier League and domestic tournaments, while also trying to manage a deep run in the Champions League.