PREMIER LEAGUE

Klopp blasts fixture scheduling; Fabinho and Alisson ruled out of Watford clash

Liverpool manager Jürgen Klopp has criticised the scheduling of his team's Premier League game with Watford so soon after Brazil faced Uruguay.

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Klopp blasts fixture scheduling as Fabinho and Alisson ruled out of Watford clash

Jürgen Klopp has expressed his frustration at the scheduling of Liverpool's Premier League clash with Watford just 35 hours after Brazil's World Cup qualifier against Uruguay.

Fabinho and Alisson back for Atlético game

Fabinho started for Brazil as they beat Uruguay 4-1, while goalkeeper Alisson was on the bench. The pair will not return to England ahead of the Reds' next league game on Saturday. Instead, Klopp will have to make do without them as they fly straight to Spain in the hope of featuring in Liverpool's Champions League meeting with Atlético Madrid on Tuesday.

The German coach explained that the decision had been made to avoid forcing the pair to isolate for longer than necessary, but bemoaned the fact that Liverpool's European opponents Atlético do not have a league game this weekend.

"Somebody decided to give Brazil the opportunity to play last night and then somebody made the decision for us to play on Saturday at 12:30," Klopp said. "It's not in our hands. Atlético are not playing at the weekend and they are our next opponents in the Champions League. That would not happen here. We have known it for a while so we have decided that the boys would not be here and they would go straight to Madrid.

"We had to sort quarantine issues and the decision we made is the boys will not be here, they will go directly to Madrid, wait there for us, hopefully, be able to play against Atletico, then will come back slightly later than us, so then they can come back in our normal procedure again," he continued. "Obviously they could have flown into England but with all the quarantine stuff that would have meant they would have to isolate from their families and Ali has three kids and being away with the national teams and then 10 days in isolation with the same rubbish again. We need solutions for that and they are still not there.

"They have played in Brazil so they already had four days there not in a red-list country and that's what counts. Then another six days not in a red-list country then they can come back and start immediately so even when they go from bubble to bubble to bubble it is still 10 days and for us that is the solution."

Absentees in midfield

Alisson has played every minute of Premier League football available for Liverpool, while Fabinho has started five of the Reds' seven games, but Klopp will be forced to look for alternatives within his squad against the Hornets. However, Liverpool are already light on midfield options, with Thiago Alcântara, Curtis Jones and Harvey Elliott all ruled out through injury.