Jurgen Klopp’s anger towards early kick-off times for his side continues, as Liverpool are set to face off against former Reds manager Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace this weekend.

Klopp lashed out at Amazon Prime Video presenter Marcus Buckland despite overseeing a 2-0 win against Sheffield United at Bramall Lane on Wednesday evening. The victory however, didn’t soften the blow of another early fixture as the German was in a prickly mood, labelling Buckland “completely ignorant” following a quip calling it Klopp’s “favourite kick-off time.”

Perhaps the most damning part of all of this is that Liverpool have played 15 early kick-off fixtures since Jurgen Klopp took over at the club in 2015, with 12 of these coming directly after an international break. The next closest number of early fixtures played by a Premier League club in the same time frame is Tottenham Hotspur with six.

The main concern for the Liverpool manager is player welfare, a point he has made abundantly clear since he arrived in England, with many pundits and ex-players siding with him on this matter.

However, former Everton and England striker Gary Lineker on his The Rest is Football podcast, said “How could you joke about something like that? And I was thinking what a 12:30 kick off? It’s not a hill to die on that one, when you look at the things going on around the world at the moment.”

Gary Lineker Photo, Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Gary Lineker has mocked Klopp’s reaction this week / Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

In recent weeks, the injury list has massively increased across the Premier League, raising questions about the sheer volume of games going into the festive period.

With Liverpool having lost two crucial players in the last two weeks, Klopp has echoed his frustration as he has to face up to five weeks without his first-choice goalkeeper, Alisson and defender Joel Matip who may have played his final game for the Reds after picking up an ACL injury.

In previous interviews throughout the season, Klopp has mentioned that he is hesitant to publicly mention it amidst criticism whenever he does, but the general football community seems to be warming to the idea of calling for change.

Said Klopp: “That is difficult, two and a half hours after getting out of bed. You cannot get the boys up at 5am in the morning to make them 100% ready for the game all these things are really difficult and the only thing I am asking for is all the TV stations help there because you want to have the best product there and we want to have the best product as well.”

However, the commotion surrounding the early fixtures each game week doesn’t appear to be helping Klopp with criticism coming from all angles in the media and from the football community of fans whose patience is wearing thin with the Liverpool boss.

Liverpool will have to be ready to go once again at lunchtime this Saturday when they face Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park in what should be a fairly comfortable game. But Liverpool never make anything easy.