Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp calls out Richard Masters leadership as Premier League subs row escalates


Jurgen Klopp has questioned the leadership of Premier League chief executive Richard Masters and leant his support to Manchester United counterpart Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in the debate over fixture scheduling.

Solskjaer accused the Premier League of setting United up to fail after their 3-1 win at Everton on Saturday lunchtime came less than 72 hours after a trip to Turkey to play against Istanbul Basaksehir on Wednesday night.

Klopp saw Trent Alexander-Arnold injured during his side’s 1-1 draw with Manchester City on Sunday and went further than Solskjaer after the final whistle, directly questioning Masters’ leadership.

The Liverpool manager shared Solskjaer’s concerns over scheduling but also criticised Masters over the failure to increase the number of substitutions permitted per game from three to five.

“In my understanding it is a lack of leadership,” he said. “You go in a meeting and Richard Masters said you want three subs or five subs. It is not an advantage, it is a necessity. In all other countries it happens.  

“Richard Masters sold it completely wrong. It is the only big league where you have only three subs. Trent will be out for England. What he has we don’t know. It will not be the only one Gareth has lost.”

On scheduling, Klopp said: “I spoke about two weeks ago, a meeting with person at the Premier LEague who organised the fixtures. We cannot change it. It is not about Manchester United, Liverpool and City. These things should not happen.  

“The Premier League needs to fulfil more the position of the unity of the players. Usually in the season we all have a November and December. 

“This year the October is like a December, the November is like a November and the December is still like a December.  

“It is completely normal we play a Saturday, it is the 1230 that is a killer. Tottenham played Thursday and today play 12. The only problem is we injured the players. It is not about us. It is about the players.  

“We have to talk again about the five subs. If 14 teams say that, let us make five subs when we play each other. We want to play football, it is great but Wednesday night and 12.30pm should not be allowed.  

“City and us played Tuesday. If the Tuesday teams is in contention for the Saturday 12.30pm that is ok but the Wednesday teams should not be in contention.  

“Sky, BT, Premier League, they have to talk. Tonight we lost Trent, I am pretty sure. If we continue like this hopefully we can play the Euros next summer, let’s see which players can be part of that.”

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