The manager of Liverpool football club, Jurgen Klopp said he was satisfied with the performance of his team despite a 1-1 draw in two successive pre-season games.
On Tuesday, July 20, 2021, Liverpool played two pre-season games at their training camp in Austria. Each of the two games lasted for 30 minutes only.
In the game between Liverpool and the Austrian side, FC Wacker Innsbruck, the Premier League club took the lead courtesy of Divock Origi’s penalty. The Austrian side did not hesitate to equalize before the 30-minute game ended.
While in the second game which was against VfB Stuttgart, Liverpool had to struggle to get back to the game after the German Bundesliga side scored first in the game. It took the effort of Sadio Mane for Liverpool to get another 1-1 draw.
Liverpool used 22 players to execute the two pre-season games which did not last more than an hour. After the game, coach Jurgen Klopp said the game went the way he wanted.
“Physically it was all that we wanted to see, we had to do it and it was an important test for that”, he told Liverpool’s official website.
“First game was obviously a very young team, Innsbruck did well and were obviously in a better moment than we are because they start next week with the league and we started last week with pre-season, so it’s different.
“The second game was a tough test, Stuttgart are a really good team. We started really well and then conceded a goal. Then we came more and more into the game again and scored a really nice goal.
“I’m really happy about it, it’s all good. I saw what I expected to see, actually – it would be strange if I was standing here and saying, ‘My God, I didn’t know we can play this kind of football’ but I am fine with it and now we keep working.”
This is what the boss had to say after we kicked off pre-season with two 30-minute matches in Austria 👊— Liverpool FC (@LFC) July 20, 2021
Jurgen Klopp said Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez are not fully fit for action
Ahead of the pre-season games against FC Wacker Innsbruck and VfB Stuttgart, most fans of Liverpool were expecting to see Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez in action.
However, the two players were not featured in the two pre-season games despite being at the training camp with the team.
Recall that Virgil van Dijk and Joe Gomez have been injured since the second half of the 2020-2021 season. Since then, they have been going through different aspects of rehabilitation to get them ready for the 2021-2022 season.
However, the rate at which they were expected to recover from their injuries was not to be. Hence, they could not represent their countries in the just-concluded European Championship.
After Liverpool’s pre-season games on Tuesday, coach Jurgen Klopp said the two players are still not certified fit to play competitive football. He however revealed that they have started doing more intense training which means that they are gradually returning to match fitness.
The German coach revealed that the two defenders might not be fit enough for the club’s friendly game against Mainz on Friday, July 23, at 17:15.
He said: “They have looked really good in training and yesterday was the first day where they did very complex things, usually it is either offensive or defensive and stuff like this. We have to get there, step by step, but I don’t expect them for Friday.”