Sunday, May 26, 2019

Klopp takes aim at Champions League & Nations League schedule clash

SoccerNews in English Premier League 10 May 2019

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Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has bemoaned the scheduling of the UEFA Nations League Finals so soon after the Champions League final.

The Reds clash with Tottenham in Madrid on June 1 and many of the two teams’ players will be in action when England play Netherlands five days later in a Guimaraes semi-final.

Klopp believes players are at risk from the constant action and has accused UEFA of “interesting planning” with its placement of a tournament he has previously criticised.

“On June 1 we play the Champions League final and on June 6 there is a wonderful tournament called the Nations Cup [League],” he told reporters.

“Everyone looked at me when I said it was not such a good idea. Now, surprise, two English teams are in the Champions League final.

“If you don’t learn to deal with our players in a better way competition wise, it is the only chance to kill this wonderful game. For now, other people have to deal with that.

“It’s not Gareth [Southgate’s] fault. To plan something like this and be surprised that two top sides are involved in the Champions League final, and a lot of these players are involved in the Nations League… that is interesting planning.”

Klopp also extended his sympathies to Liverpool and Tottenham fans, who face exorbitant prices to travel to Madrid for the Champions League showpiece.

“Obviously travel agencies and hotels are not silly. It is difficult for supporters. Madrid is expensive but at least it is not another part of the world.”

That led Klopp to take aim at a piece of UEFA planning that will see Arsenal and Chelsea contest a London derby in Baku later this month, after both reached the Europa League final.

“Going to Baku for the Europa League final is a strange decision, I think. I don’t know what the organisers have for breakfast when they make these decisions,” he added.

“Last year we went to Kiev – a wonderful city. But it is unlikely that a team from that part of the world will be involved. Madrid will have to be prepared for 200,000 English fans.

“These decisions must be much more sensible. Maybe the cities must agree to a price cut first? One hundred pounds a room and not £2,700! I sympathise with supporters a lot.”

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