Later News May 21

It's like the first day of school, says Klopp, as Liverpool return to training


Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said he felt like it was his first day at school yesterday when the team returned to training in small groups at their training ground in Melwood.

 

“I woke up even earlier than usual and then I realised it was my first day. It felt like the first day at school - for me, it was 46 years ago, but it must have been similar,” Klopp told Liverpool’s official website. 

 

“I dressed myself in my uniform again – and for the right reason, for going to training,” added the German coach, who will be hoping his players do not return to competition playing like bungling schoolboys.

 

WATCH: Klopp talks about learning new skills during the lockdown

 

Liverpool are 25 points clear of second-placed Manchester City and need just six points from their remaining nine fixtures to win their first league title in three decades, and their first Premier League title.

 

Klopp said he was really happy to see his players and described them as being in good spirits and in good shape as they went about staggered sessions of contactless training while observing strict social distancing.

“I have to say. If anybody was worried from our fans, you don’t have to – the boys are in good shape,” said Klopp.

 

WATCH: Brighton manager Graham Potter discusses EPL managers meeting

 

With the UK government allowing sports to resume with restrictions, the 20 clubs in the English Premier League agreed unanimously to return to training at Monday’s Project Restart meeting.

 

Players are permitted to train in groups of up to five, and sessions must not go beyond 75 minutes for each player.  

 

The English Premier League had previously set the resumption of the competition for June 12, but this is likely to be pushed back to a later date as clubs have still to agree on other protocols such as the venues at which the remaining 92 matches are played.

 

Meanwhile, Klopp is already looking at the remainder of the current season as the pre-season for the next.

 

“We don't know exactly how long we have, but we have some time to prepare the rest of this season and already the next season, because I don’t think there will be a massive break between the two,” said Klopp.

 

“It's a pre-season for us. We don't know how long and we will not have test games or friendlies.”

 

WATCH: Liverpool players keep fit during lockdown with online yoga sessions

 

Premier League players are given only two to three weeks off each year, and Klopp was happy that his players had a proper rest in the nine weeks since fixtures were postponed. He was under no illusion that it was a holiday, though. 

 

“Of course, you cannot rest when you are worried about the situation in the world, not in the same way like you do on a proper holiday,” said Klopp.

 

While some players from other clubs were concerned about catching the coronavirus during training, Klopp was pleased with the protocols and said the Liverpool squad were able to train safely. He was also happy with the work done during training. 

 

“It’s little things, getting used to the pitch, boots and ball, turns, passes, half-passes, softer passes, running, little accelerations and stuff like that.

 

“It looked really, really good.

 

“The sessions were perfectly organised, it is all about football,” Klopp added.

 

Which is great news for football fans, and it’s only the first day at school.

 

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