Jurgen Klopp – as we suspected would be the case – was right all along: the UEFA Nations League was not a good idea.
Literally a couple of days after the Champions League final, UEFA decided to make players from England, Portugal, Switzerland and the Netherlands play in another competitive tournament after a long, hard season.
The Reds, in particular, have been made to pay, with Xherdan Shaqiri picking up his injury during the tournament. It didn’t look that bad at the time, but the Swiss talisman has now missed all of pre-season, including the US tour, and might not make the start of the new campaign.
Klopp said all along that the Nations League was a bad idea, and now he has not held back in reiterating those views.
He said, via the Daily Telegraph: “I said about the Nations League – I don’t like it. People looked at me and said ‘huh?’ – each national coach around the world said. ‘No, I love it. It’s brilliant and we go for something’.
“So now we have the World Cup, the European Championships and the Nations League. So I looked at the games. Four days after the Champions League final, the boys are there. The Dutch guys, Shaq [Shaqiri], the English boys.
“If they had been friendly games, the boys would not have been there at all. But no, it’s the Nations League, so they have got to go. There is always an important competition. The next important competition.”
Klopp is absolutely spot on again – the scheduling from UEFA was horrific. Both the Champions League and the Nations League are UEFA competitions so there is no excuse.
There is always going to be a thirst for football from supporters – but at some point, breaking point will be reached. The saturation point can’t be too far away.