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KLOPP DEBATE 'He got it wrong' - Gary Neville rejects Jurgen Klopp's complaints in heated exchange with Jamie Carragher


Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher. CREDIT: REUTERS

Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher. CREDIT: REUTERS

Gary Neville and Jamie Carragher. CREDIT: REUTERS

Gary Neville believes Jurgen Klopp came off second best in his TV interview with BT Sports reporter Des Kelly on Saturday, as he suggested the Liverpool boss is mistaken in many of the complaints he offered up.

Klopp was adamant that teams playing in Wednesday night European games should not be asked to play in the 12.30 lunchtime Saturday slot for the next round of Premier League matches.

He also suggested the unique demands of this season, when fixtures are coming thick and fast amid a shortened season, should encourage broadcasters to try and help clubs more than ever before.

Yet in a spirited debated with his Sky Sports sparring partner Jamie Carragher, former Manchester United defender Neville insisted Klopp presented arguments that don't add up as he suggested the German was merely trying to engineer an advantage for his team with his comments.

"I personally hated the 12.30 kick-off on a Saturday," reflected Neville. "Your legs never felt the same, you were eating pasta at 9am in the morning and it was more difficult, particularly away from home.

"It doesn't feel the same, but when you are Liverpool or Manchester United, you want to hit the Asian market and it's 7pm there. The big clubs play at that time every week. We always did at United.

"I played for a manager in Sir Alex Ferguson who wanted that advantage. He wanted the ability to play more and play at times that suited Manchester United and that's what Jurgen Klopp wants now.

"Liverpool win this league at a canter if they don't get injuries this season. They are by far the best team and it pains me to say it. They are stronger, they are quicker, they are hungry. He has got everything right there.

"The only risk is them picking up injuries, so Jurgen Klopp wants five subs and better kick-off times for Liverpool Football Club."

Neville also disputed Klopp's claim that this was an exceptional season due to the Covid-19 pandemic and while Carragher disputed that claim, the repost was forthright.

"Jurgen Klopp for three years and picked a very similar team, to compete with Man City," added Neville. "I didn't think those players could play every week and compete in the Champions League and Premier League, but I was wrong. What Jurgen Klopp has done has been unbelievable, but his squad is wilting a bit.

"The players have had more rest than they've ever had before. They had three months of Covid, five weeks off before the start of the season. There's more rest this year than any time in football history.

"The rest time has been there. I don't think Jurgen Klopp has a point around fatigue, around the length of time in pre-season, about the Saturday kick-offs. The best managers want to win. He wants to try and gain that advantage.

"Jurgen Klopp has been the best manager in interviews in interviews for the last few years, he is the best manager on the pitch, he's connected with the fans better than anyone, his style of football is fantastic, but on Saturday he got done in an interview.

"He doesn't have the evidence to back up his arguments. He has just lost this particular one. He got it wrong."

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Online Editors