On Wednesday night, Jurgen Klopp highlighted how many games Liverpool have played compared to Arsenal before saying ‘we don’t complain’ – unless they fail to win the game, of course.
Mikel Arteta is coming in for some criticism from pundits and opposition fans for complaining that Arsenal have to play again in the early kick-off on Saturday after playing late on Wednesday night.
There is no need for the game to be played then and the Arsenal manager was keen to point out that it seems to happen when we have big games.
“Thank you so much to the Premier League,” Arteta said sarcastically.
“To do that, and they’ve done it again when we have to play Chelsea and Manchester United, so if they want to give them any advantage, I say to them today, thank you so much for doing that.”
Speaking after the match, Jurgen Klopp spoke about Liverpool’s schedule and was not entirely honest.
“I think we had six games more than Arsenal [since the Carabao Cup semi-final], you can see that as well,” he said.
“We constantly travel, we go here, we go there, we are in the hotel and stuff like this. Since we met last time we had six games more than them I think, 13 and seven if I am right.
“13 games is really mad and it will not stop.
“Actually, I don’t complain, we don’t complain, it’s just how it is.
“We wake up in a different hotel and somebody tells you where the restaurant is and you try to remember the number of your room, that’s our life in the moment.”
You don’t complain about it, you say? Is that just because you won?
This must be someone else complaining last season about exactly the same thing:
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) November 28, 2020
While it’s easy for Liverpool to point to their extra games, they are playing in Europe and, as such, have a squad built to play Saturday-Wednesday.
Arsenal do not.
They cancelled contracts and allowed players to leave on loan on the basis that they only had league football to play.
In fact, Arsenal have not had a full bench of senior players since 1 January when they played Manchester City.
Since then, they have always had to name at least one youth player to make up the numbers.
The only way Arsenal can have a full bench of senior players is if they have zero injuries.
Playing Wednesday night, early Saturday should not be a thing and Arteta is right, as are the other managers when they complain about it.
"The kick-off time set us up to fail."
"It's an absolute shambles. The boys deserve better."
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is furious that Man Utd have had to play on Saturday afternoon having played in Turkey on Wednesday night.
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) November 7, 2020
Tottenham, who kicked off 45 minutes earlier than Arsenal on Wednesday, don’t play until Sunday at 4.30pm, the last league match of the weekend.
Arteta no doubt feels, like many Arsenal fans, that the club is treated differently by those in charge
Frank Lampard admitted that the referees chief phoned him to apologise after VAR failed to award Everton a penalty against Manchester City.
Arteta recently confirmed that he has had no such call from Mikel Riley, despite suffering the same sort of injustice on a regular basis, with at least five stonewall penalties denied in three games prior to the VAR call Arsenal got at the weekend.