LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, May 5, 2024: Liverpool's substitute Stefan Bajcetic on the bench before the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur FC at Anfield. Liverpool won 4-2. (Photo by Ryan Brown/Propaganda)

Good news! Stefan Bajcetic to enjoy full Liverpool pre-season after Olympic decision

There are a lot of curveballs this summer for clubs with internationals, and the Olympics can be one of them, though Liverpool will always resist any attempts to lure players away.

Stefan Bajcetic had an outside shot at being called up to Spain’s squad for the upcoming Olympic games, but he will not travel to Paris this summer after their 22-player team was announced.

As a 19-year-old, the midfielder fit within the rules of the competition, which is for players under 23 years of age – with only three exceptions.

Those exceptions are why Mohamed Salah and Wataru Endo continue to be mooted as possible players in Paris. However, Liverpool have all the power to block call-ups as it’s not a FIFA-sanctioned tournament.

2KF9C79 BAJCETIC STEFAN, SPAIN U19 vs SAUDI ARABIA U20, Men, friendly match, Football Wek, Pinatar Arena Football Center. Spain, Region de Murcia, San Pedro (Pascu Mendez / Alamy Stock Photo)

It was always to be a tall order for Bajcetic to be considered having played just 72 minutes last season due to a long battle with injury, but his return to fitness did leave the door ajar.

Instead, he has been able to enjoy a six-week holiday and will now focus solely on settling back into first-team training under new head coach Arne Slot.

The club’s pre-season friendlies will afford him the chance to find his feet again and the uninterrupted time ahead of 2024/25 will be invaluable having missed last year’s pre-season.

While it may be a personal disappointment if Bajcetic did have eyes on the Olympics, if we look at the bigger picture, it is positive news as he can lay strong foundations for the year ahead under Liverpool’s supervision.

With a host of key midfielders to be absent due to international commitments, Bajcetic will not be short on opportunities to see his time on the training pitch rewarded with minutes in friendlies.

Spain’s Olympic squad contains just one player from a club in the Premier League, with Man City defender Sergio Gomez taking up one of the overage spots.