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LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, August 31, 2022: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp celebrates after the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Newcastle United FC at Anfield. Liverpool won 2-1. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

5 things we’re looking forward to as Liverpool return from international break

It has been a long wait to see Liverpool in Premier League action but that comes to a stop on Saturday, with a relentless 42 days to follow prior to the World Cup.

When Brighton arrives at Anfield on Saturday, Jurgen Klopp‘s side will have played only once in the last 23 days after disruptions to the schedule following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

What has ensued since has seen a number of Reds feature for their countries during the international break, while others used the time to recharge their batteries and recover from any knocks.

It’s a period of time many will hope to have a positive impact on Liverpool’s form, which has been inconsistent at best so far this season.

So here is what we’re looking forward to for the Reds’ return to action.

 

Injuries to ease up

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, July 31, 2022: Liverpool's Ibrahima Konaté during the pre-match warm-up before a pre-season friendly match between Liverpool FC and RC Strasbourg Alsace at Anfield. Strasbourg won 3-0. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Injuries have not been kind to Liverpool so far this season, it’s been one after another and it has wreaked havoc on the balance of Klopp’s squad – and our sanity.

Heading into the international break, the Reds had nine players out due to injury: Andy Robertson, Curtis Jones, Naby Keita, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ibrahima Konate, Caoimhin Kelleher, Calvin Ramsay, Kaide Gordon and Jordan Henderson.

The captain returned for England in a welcome boost, Konate and Jones are both nearing their returns and the hope will be that Andy Robertson is not too far behind either.

Their respective returns would make the squad far more manageable as Liverpool can’t run the risk of overplaying those currently fit as it will only end in a continuous cycle of injuries.

Thankfully, though, Trent Alexander-Arnold did not play for England, Mo Salah was allowed to leave Egypt early and Thiago was not called up by the Spain squad.

 

Non-stop football

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, August 31, 2022: Liverpool's Roberto Firmino celebrates after scoring the first equalising goal during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Newcastle United FC at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The word relentless fits perfectly for what lies ahead for Liverpool.

After 28 days without a league match, the longest gap since 1979, as reported by Opta’s Michael Reid, Klopp’s side will play in the Premier League eight times until the break comes for the World Cup.

When you then factor in four Champions League matches and one Carabao Cup game, the Reds will play 13 games in the space of 42 days – an average of a game every 3.2 days.

Every midweek and weekend will see Liverpool in action and Klopp may squirm slightly at the thought.

As a fan, though, it’s an exciting yet nerve-wracking prospect with this run of games to be decisive for what the Reds will have to fight for on their return after Christmas.

 

Rangers double-header

Rangers Ryan Kent during the UEFA Europa League, Second Qualifying Round, Second Leg match at Ibrox, Glasgow.

For the first time in the club’s shared history, Liverpool and Rangers are to meet in a competitive fixture when they face off in the Champions League on October 4 and 12.

It sets up an interesting couple of games for Klopp’s side in Group A, decisive ones at that after picking up a total of three points in the first two games against Napoli and Ajax.

Rangers are currently pointless but did put up a good fight against Napoli before succumbing to the pressure late on.

Ex-Reds Ryan Kent and Ben Davies are in Rangers’ ranks and a reunion of sorts could be on the cards.

Looking forward to these games!

 

A meeting with City

LEICESTER, ENGLAND - Saturday, July 30, 2022: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp (R) and Manchester City's manager Josep 'Pep' Guardiola during the FA Community Shield friendly match between Liverpool FC and Manchester City FC at the King Power Stadium. Liverpool won 3-1. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

If you are sensing a little trepidation at this one, you won’t be alone.

Liverpool’s form has not been too inspiring having dropped points on four occasions as opposed to Man City‘s two, but if there’s any fixture to be fired up for, it is this one.

At the start of the season, we identified the need for Liverpool to take more than four points off Pep Guardiola’s side each season and with the first game taking place at Anfield on October 16, it’s the opportune time to start with three points.

It doesn’t feel like we’re in the title race at this stage but that can all change and strong results in the lead-up to this match will only serve to strengthen the resolve.

There will be nerves aplenty, but optimism too – the typical rollercoaster emotions as a Liverpool fan.

 

The first sight of Ramsay

SALZBURG, AUSTRIA - Wednesday, July 27, 2022: Liverpool's Calvin Ramsay on the bench during the pre-match warm-up before a pre-season friendly between FC Red Bull Salzburg and Liverpool FC at the Red Bull Arena. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Calvin Ramsay arrived in the summer but sightings have been few and far between thanks to an injury that was identified during his first day of pre-season.

“We found a little injury which kids – which he is still – have when they grow,” Klopp explained as the club take a patient approach to his recovery.

Prior to the break, though, the manager said the 19-year-old is “really getting closer and closer,” and the hope will be that he can make his full training debut in the coming weeks.

Coaches and teammates have voiced their desire to finally see him on the pitch and as fans, you hope that he will at least be up for selection for the visit of Derby in the Carabao Cup on November 9.

It’s been far from an ideal start to life at Anfield for the youngster but he will no doubt have used the time off the pitch to observe and learn, and his presence can be invaluable at right-back as Trent Alexander-Arnold‘s deputy.