Let me start off by saying I absolutely hate International breaks. Especially ones that are just friendlies. I can tolerate it when there are big qualifiers, like one of my favorite things in this sport are the qualifiers in South America, the quality of the football isn’t as good as it is in club games, it never is not even at the World Cup, but this is the by far the best International football has to offer. The intensity, passion, and sheer madness of the qualifiers in that region is absolutely insane. It doesn’t hurt South America has some of the best powers the sport has to offer, but there is just something different about these qualifiers, it’s honestly better than the World Cup for me. While we’re in the trust tree here. The people that love the World Cup, most are the people who watch the sport once every 4 years, or anyone who watches the sport but doesn’t watch anything from Europe. Club football in Europe is the best the sport has to offer and it’s not even close. The World Cup is great and all, but what makes it great is all the pageantry and passion for the countries off the field. The games themselves tend to lack for quality. It’s simple these teams get together for 2 weeks at a time 4 times a year and then for a month in the summer it doesn’t give the managers much time to come up with an intricate system to make the game what it is at the top club levels. So, what you get a lot of the time I just bland simple football. If Club is a 10 on a scale of 1-10 I would put international at a 7. I would rather watch NFL, College Football, NHL, MLB, and NBA to be honest. Now I love all those sports, but footy is my favorite but when it comes to the international game it doesn’t move my needle nearly as much. Don’t get me wrong when the World Cup rolls around I will be as excited as anyone I won’t miss a game, but it’s still not the same for me as the other 9 months are. And I have had fun twitter arguments with fools who have argued with me that the quality is better. Child Please! Like I said it isn’t close.
This international break is the worst of all international breaks there isn’t 1 game that means anything, it’s nothing but friendlies. So, sure I’ll maybe check out a game here or there but don’t think that I’m going to be glued to the tv for any of these matches. The only thing that these breaks are good from is getting sleep on the weekend and getting a breather from the sport. If you’re like me and I really don’t think anyone else on this planet is. I watch somewhere between 35-50 games each week. I will avoid scores anyway I can so I can watch any game I want without knowing the score. I will watch 3 games at a time, but with so many games happening on the weekend it is impossible to watch every game live with only 3 screens. I go all out in my tactics to avoid scores. I will tell everyone I know not to tell me any scores. I will tweet, but not look at my timeline or mentions. I will avoid texts of any type and turn all my alerts off on my phone. I even go as far as putting something over the little scoreboard NBC has, or the tickers that Fox and ESPN has so it won’t see any scores. I turn the channel at halftime so I won’t see any scores or highlights, that’s right I am certifiable, but I enjoy it and watching so much obviously doesn’t hurt my knowledge of the games, teams, and players. So, an international break sometimes is okay for me because it allows me to catch my breath, not burn out from watching so much, maybe get caught up on a show on Netflix I’ve been telling people for 6 months I would watch, or having a social life, but in my real life I work in customer service so I’ve really started hating people over the last few years because after doing this for 15 years it has ruined how I feel about people, you’ll learn rather quickly that 99.9% of people are nothing but whiny, annoying, needy, bitchy pains in the a$$. Which in a lot of ways has ruined my social life because when I’m not at work the last thing I want is to do is be around a bunch of people, unless it is a select few, so sleep and Netflix it is.
The only thing I care about this break is that no one from Liverpool gets hurt, but I don’t want to see anyone get hurt. I don’t want to see a big Champions League tie, the exciting Napoli/Juve Scudetto race, the great top 4 races in England or Germany impacted because someone pulled a hammy during a meaningless game. I want to see everyone be at their best for the best part of the season. For example American wonderkid Christian Pulisic isn’t playing in the United States friendly against Paraguay. I applaud this, he has more important things to worry about right now. They play Bayern Munich right after the break and are in a really tight top 4 race. I wish more players would do this, but I get if you’re going to the World Cup, this is the only chance before the World Cup camp to maybe set your time in the formation and lineup you think that you may want to see at the World Cup, so it does give the managers a chance to see how it looks and how they do in it, but if you’re not going to the World Cup you have no reason to play if the team that actually pays you has things to play for.
So without further ado here is the list of Liverpool players involved with the international break. Like I said please don’t get hurt. I don’t care how you play. To be honest I would be thrilled if anyone on the list rode the pine for these games. I am so damn nervous about injuries right now, we have so much to play for and I don’t want these crap games to impact the rest of our season.
Alexander-Arnold (England U-21) *Can (Germany) Firmino (Brazil) Gomez (England) *Grujic (Serbia) Henderson (England) Klavan (Estonia) Lallana (England) Mignolet (Belguim) Mane (Senegal) *Origi (Belguim) Oxlade-Chamberlain (England) Robertson (Scotland) Salah (Egypt) Solanke (England U-21) van Dijk (Netherlands) Wijnaldum (Netherlands) Woodburn (Wales)
*Can left the game on Saturday injured after only 27 minutes but Jurgen Klopp said that it was a muscle thing and didn’t appear to be too serious that he would still report to the Germany camp, receive treatment from their doctors and there is a chance he could even play. Here’s to him not playing and getting the 2 weeks of rest which should help him immensely and taking no risk of aggravating the injury, but glad to hear the news sounds positive.
*Grujic and Origi are out on loan but still a good sign that they are being called up for international duty. This is Grujic’s first call up with Serbia’s senior national team so congrats to him on the honor.
*Dejan Lovren was expected to join his Croatian squad for games against Peru in Dallas and Mexico in Dallas, but withdrew due to an ankle problem. I’ll be honest I didn’t hear about him having this ankle problem before the game this weekend. Maybe I was under a rock and missed this, but this was a bit surprising to me. Despite winning the award for most unpopular Red, just beating out Simon Mignolet I honestly think he’s played well except for the first Spurs game. Up until the Manchester United tilt I felt confident with him next to van Dijk even more than Matip, but he was poor on the 2 goals losing headers to Lukaku, but at the same time both of those were more on Alexander-Arnold and Can. Can needs to be closer to give him protection and make it harder for Lukaku. Side note: Who does this scheduling? Why take the unnecessary travel. I know it’s all about the benjamins baby, but at the same time that is crappy travel for meaningless games. Argentina and Brazil get it they’ve scheduled games in Europe to cut down on the travel for the majority of their squads.
*Naby Keita the future red pulled out of his games with Guinea due to a bruised spine and a fever. That actually sounds really concerning, but hopefully it is nothing as he was the best player on the pitch for Leipzig in their huge home win over Bayern Munich yesterday, a game they dominated and absolutely deserved. The first team to do that to Munich in a long time, as you know Munich has been on fire since the managerial change. But let’s hope this isn’t anything serious for Keita.
Liverpool has 16 players on the current senior team called up for international duty and 18 overall if you count the players out on loan, this is a lot of players but the one thing about being a big club is you know you’re going to have a lot of internationals if you don’t you probably don’t have a very good team.