Far fresher opponents worth two chances against Liverpool

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For all his fuzziness, Jurgen Klopp couldn’t prevent his irritation over Liverpool’s relentless schedule from bubbling to the surface like an emission in the bath at some of last season’s press conferences.

Whoever organised the Reds’ pre-season tour is therefore unlikely to remain on the German’s Christmas card list.

Even in the throng of games caused by three-stranded domestic action and a European campaign in 2015/16, Liverpool’s manager never had to send his team out less than 48 hours later.

A mere 44 hours after an encouraging 2-0 International Champions Cup win over AC Milan in California, Klopp will be overseeing a friendly fixture against Roma in St Louis, Missouri.

Well, what’s pre-season all about Jurgen, if not for the fitness? Meanwhile, Luciano Spalletti’s Giallorossi have barely strapped up their match boots this summer.

The team that finished third in Serie A last season, trounced local minnows Pinzolo Campiglio 16-0 before a 3-2 win over lesser known Russian outfit FC Terek Grozny two weeks ago. That game on July 17th was their last.

With vital Champions League qualifying about to take precedence for Spalletti’s men, the lighter schedule is understandable and it may well help Roma take victory in Missouri as they use the Liverpool game as a genuine tune up for their European tussles to follow.

The Italians are 19/10 chances at the home of the Cardinals and seeing as they’ve also beaten Liverpool in their last two friendlies -both across the pond in 2012 and 2014 latterly – this seems a reasonable punt.

The Reds will obviously rotate bodies, but Klopp is particularly stretched for resources at centre-half, so Dejan Lovren and new man Ragnar Klavan may feel the effects of Sunday’s exploits most.

Roma have to be fancied in both the double chance market at 4/7 and the 11/10 without the draw, given their comparative freshness.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.