Liverpool have already begun their pre-season in preparation for the start of the 2021/22 Premier League campaign, and manager, Jurgen Klopp, is finding it really strange.
A July start date to proceedings, to allow for a few weeks of intense workouts, is standard pre-season fare for any top-flight side, coupled with a handful of workouts against teams of varying standards.
However, what’s different this time is where the Reds have decided to base themselves.
Rather than being put through their paces at their Kirkby training facility, the squad jetted out to Austria on Monday, and they’ll stay there for a month. There’s a good reason for the switch too.
“We stay now [in Austria] for around about four weeks away and this is really, really strange. I never did that before,” Klopp was quoted as saying by the Liverpool ECHO.
“It’s different when you play a tournament; for example, some players did that obviously, like Euros or World Cups or African Cups or whatever.
“It’s clear they have a similar situation but it’s a preparation after a season for a short period. We prepare after a long break for a long season.
“So the training will be really intense from a specific point of view. It’s now already intense for the situation they are in
“So we have to be creative and everybody is responsible for keeping the mood up. I never experienced a situation like that – 28 days is really long. But it’s good as well.
“We have enough time to train, we have enough time to talk and when the players from the Euros or the Copa [America] come back we are hopefully able to bring them in without quarantine and these kinds of things.
“That was all important. That we can be together in the bubble, fly as a bubble together to England [so] that we don’t have to get quarantined there and all these things.
“It’s a tricky situation, but that’s the reason why we are away for quite a while.”
The squad will almost certainly be hoping for a better campaign after what turned into a disastrous 2020/21, in the most part down to a series of season-ending injuries to key players.
With a near full-strength squad to work with in Austria, Klopp can look forward to what’s to come.