Liverpool will look forward to the international break as key players return from injuries and international duties.
The Premier League takes a breather as the fourth International Break begins. It would be a relief for Jurgen Klopp’s men as the incredibly busy period comes to an end.
Another International Break?
Yep. Another one.
It is a highly unusual break, courtesy of the pandemic. A number of fixtures last year were called-off in Asia and South America. Consequently, this period makes up for the lost time. UEFA aren’t involved and hence, we won’t see the likes of England and Germany play.
The international break will start on 24th January and end on 2nd February.
Brazil have called up Alisson and Fabinho for international duty. The duo will be in the squad which takes on Ecuador (Jan 27) and Paraguay (Feb 2). Roberto Firmino however, will miss these games. As Brazil manager, Tite left out Roberto Firmino from the squad.
Moreover, Japan have also called up Takumi Minamino on national duty. During the break, Japan will lock horns with China (Jan 27) and Saudi Arabia (Feb 1).
Naby Keita, Mohammed Salah, and Sadio Mane are also playing in AFCON and would therefore return after the international break.
Injuries & Returns
January has historically, been a difficult period for Liverpool in the past. The stats say the same, Liverpool’s record in January under Klopp prior to this month: P43 W19 L14 D10. However, Liverpool were undefeated this month, winning 4 out of 6 games. In fact, the Reds did it without their best players. Though, it has understandably left the squad spent.
Klopp’s men would therefore like to use this time to regroup. More importantly, the break has given some much needed time to relax players.
Liverpool are also eagerly awaiting the return of key players from injury after the international break. The list includes the likes of Harvey Elliot, Thiago Alcantara, Divock Origi, and Nat Phillips. While Elliot and Thiago are slated to return by the Cardiff game, both Phillips and Origi are out for a longer period.
The Reds also have the returns of Naby Keita, Mohammed Salah, and Sadio Mane to look forward to. The trio would be available for the crucial clash against Leicester, barring an injury (God forbid).