Liverpool’s path to complete this campaign and start next year looks more clear after Premier League clubs agreed a potential start date for 2020/21 season.
Plans have so far been focused on getting health and safety protocols in place for players and staff, discussing where matches will be played and other immediate necessities.
But the meeting between club executives on Thursday saw them look further ahead, too, with the Mirror reporting that the start of 20/21 came under discussion.
That allows clubs to start planning how they will approach the new campaign after this one finishes, with the usual summer break and pre-season build-up thrown out the window by the league postponement and a probable lack of overseas travel.
Clubs have, therefore, agreed to start the new season “in the second weekend of September, Saturday 12 and Sunday 13.”
That clarity gives Liverpool, who don’t face any further cup competition matches, a much more straight-forward build-up, with no games at all to play in August and the possibility to allow players a proper, albeit short, break away from football.
- The probable end of 19/20 will be on 25 July
- FA Cup final is on 1 August; Champions League and play-offs afterward
- As Liverpool are in none, players could take a three-week holiday from 25 July
- That would see them return on 17 August
- Four full weeks of pre-season training and build-up to season opener on 12 September—presumably including Community Shield the weekend prior
Of course, with the strange mid-season ‘break’ of sorts players have had, plus the mini pre-season training regime they are no doubt undergoing at present, the club staff could alter those dates accordingly.
There might be a few fewer days of holiday, for example, and a much more intense final week or so of training to hit the ground running in terms of intensity, allowing the Reds to go hard at the start of what will be a title-defending campaign.
Pre-season tours to Asia and the like are of course off the table, but local friendlies, trips to European retreats or high-profile opponents from the top five league are all possible.
There’s still plenty to sort out for the current campaign, to see the team through and secure the title, but in the background the staff can now also begin to plan for the medium term and ensure Liverpool have the chance to prolong their domestic dominance.