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Jurgen Klopp hits nail on head with Brazil farce as Liverpool remain in dark

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Jurgen Klopp cut a frustrated figure as he and his players remain in the dark over the availability of Alisson and Fabinho on Sunday at Leeds.

There are less than 53 hours until kickoff at Elland Road and the availability of the Brazilian duo remains a mystery after the Brazilian FA triggered a five-day ban.

It put players in the middle of a needless battle with the pandemic still very much ongoing as Liverpool and other Premier League clubs rightly turned down their international call up.

Discussions remain ongoing between the Premier League, FIFA, the FA and the government but the farcical situation is one that simply punishes the players twice over for something completely out of their control.

Fabinho has urged a solution to come to fruition having been placed in the “middle of this kind of dispute,” and his manager was also banging the drum for common sense to prevail.

“I can say what I know: I don’t know in the moment. We will see, there are meetings going on,” Klopp told the club’s official website of his ability to select Fabinho and Alisson.

“The thing I want to say about that is just, let’s look at the full case. So, we all know we are in the middle of a pandemic, which is difficult for all parts of life and for football it was difficult as well.

“We have a few more games to play than we have to play usually internationally. We had a summer break where all of a sudden somebody organised again a Copa America, where they could have played the games, for example, without playing a Copa America, which they had a year before.

“But people decide without us these kind of things. OK, nobody cares, that’s how it is. They play a Copa America, then they still have more games to play. Then a week or 10 days before the international break we get, ‘OK, we play now three games and the last game is on Thursday night.’

“So we have nothing to do with that. Friday morning, by the way. Friday morning, 1.20am, would have been Brazil against Peru. We have nothing to do with that, we cannot decide anything about it, we just read these things.

The match in Sao Paolo was suspended after officials came on to the pitch (Andre Penner/AP).

“Then we have to think, ‘OK, clear, they are invited.’ But when they come back they have to quarantine [for] 10 days. Again, it’s not our decision, we didn’t say they have to quarantine [for] 10 days, we didn’t say you have to go to the national team, we can’t say nothing – we just sit in between and we think, ‘OK, what’s going on?’

“Our players, if they come back then they have to quarantine 10 days in a random hotel, next to the airport probably, which is not good for any people who have to do that but for a professional football player, being 10 days in a hotel – with the food they get from there – you lose everything. You lose muscle, you lose everything.

“And now, the next thing, we have a football game to play again and they tell us we cannot play our Brazilian players. It’s like, ‘Huh?’ So, we did nothing. We didn’t organise the Copa America, we are not responsible for the games they couldn’t have played.

“We didn’t invite players, we didn’t say when they come back there’s no exemption. We all didn’t do that.

“But in the end the only [people] who get punished are the players and the clubs – and we have nothing to do with the whole organisation around. It’s like, ‘What is happening?’

“So I don’t know what will happen at the weekend, to be honest. In this moment, we have to see what other people decide and then we will again accept that probably, do what people tell us and try to win a football game.

“But the whole situation is really just like the whole world in the moment in a nutshell – ‘Ah, in football they have these problems as well.’ Yes, we have these problems. And now we will see who finds the solution.”

As ever, it’s a point well made by Klopp and all he and Liverpool can do now is wait for the final decision to come, hopefully, sooner rather than later.


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