Jurgen Klopp has warned Liverpool’s players about their responsibility to stay alert during their holidays and not jeopardise preparations for the new season.
Liverpool’s squad began a fortnight’s break on Monday but the title winners were only given permission to go abroad to countries were the risk of coronavirus was low – all players have had to inform the club of where they are planning to travel.
Alisson Becker, Liverpool’s goalkeeper, has stated he will not return to his native Brazil due to the pandemic and Klopp has reminded his group of the need to stay informed with the news – and be prepared to take action – if circumstances change, as was the case with Spain on Saturday.
‘We have had this talk and it is a conversation without a real solution,’ said Klopp.
‘It is an open process which we all respect. The boys can go on holiday and we know where they will go. These countries are all completely fine with a little extra. But this situation can change constantly.
‘That is the responsibility of the boys – they are all adults and they have to make sure they know when they have to leave this specific country. You have to just follow the news and then you have to react. It is not our job to say to them: “By the way, maybe Spain has closed the border now”.
‘We cannot do that, the boys are responsible and they know that. It makes it different. Usually we have nice, little contact but we will have contact again and the boys will get a programme to work on and all that stuff. But the boys are responsible for themselves.’
With such a quick turnaround between seasons, Klopp’s mind is already focused on how Liverpool will prepare for their title defence. The intention is to have a two-week training camp in the French town of Evian, on the banks of Lake Geneva, as they have done for the last two years.
Should the pandemic prevent travel next month, however, Liverpool – who sold Dejan Lovren to Zenit St Petersburg on Monday – have two options within the United Kingdom, away from their Melwood base. Their first competitive game is scheduled to be the Community Shield on August 30.
‘You cannot go on holiday and do the things you could do in the past,’ said Klopp.
‘So we have to be disciplined but the boys are exceptional. Not only our boys, but everyone. We have had no new (positive Coronavirus) cases in the whole period of the season.
‘It shows that they are good boys – all of them – and I hope it stays like this and we will come back and train again. We had to learn to be very flexible in this period now and we were. When we started we didn’t know how long we trained for in small groups and stuff like this.
‘We decided on a date when we will start training again, then we will see how long we have to train.
‘We have to play the Community Shield and we will probably play that before [the season starts] but we don’t know exactly and it is just out of training.’