After the weekend, Liverpool departs to Qatar to play in the 2019 FIFA Club World Cup. They will therefore miss their Premier League fixture on GW18.
What is this competition and why is it important to Liverpool?
The FIFA Club World Cup is an interleague men’s association football competition organised by FIFA. Since 2005, it has been held every year, bringing together continental club champions of the world together to decide the “world’s best”. Liverpool will play the winner of Monterrey (CONCACAF) champions and Al-Sadd (host) in the semi-final on 18 Dec. If they do win, they will most likely face Flamengo, the South American champions.
This tournament has importance to Liverpool. Here’s why:
- The winner of the competition is crowned the world’s best
By winning the UEFA Champions League. Liverpool is officially Europe’s top club. To be crowned the World’s best, they would need to win here in Qatar. Some might argue the need for terminologies but the truth is, there is a good ring to being termed the World’s best. In terms of significance, this is of course no where near the FIFA World Cup but in truth, this is the highest honour any football club can win.
- They are facing relatively smaller teams
There is almost no definitive way to label a club big or small but our friends at transfermarkt.com certainly have a very good methodology. This is how all the teams look in terms of value:
- Liverpool – €1.18bn
- Flamengo – €145.30m
- CF Monterrey – €84.10m
Al-Hilal Riyadh – €45.60m
Al-Sadd – €27.88m
Esperance Tunis – €17.25m
Hienghene Sport – €775k
- This represents significant disruption to the Premier League campaign
Liverpool will not play on GW18 (v WHU) because of this tournament and will go into the New Year playing one game less than their rivals until this fixture is rescheduled. This is significant disruption to their new flawless start to the Premier League campaign., especially if their current 8-point starts to ebb away. They may be in a situation in which they are behind their rivals with a game in hand, piling psychological pressure.
This said, it makes it more important for Liverpool to win the competition.
- They want to maintain their momentum
Liverpool is of course on a monster run of results this season. Over the 27 games they have played over 4 different competitions, they have only lost once in 90min. In the Premier League, they have a near perfect record, dropping only two points to date. Jurgen Klopp would not want this momentum to stop, especially at this stage of the season. After the conclusion of this tournament, Liverpool will return home to face Leicester City, currently their closest rivals in the title race. They need all the push that they can at this juncture.
- They have never won this before
This is one of the major titles which Liverpool have never won before. They reached the Final in 2005 but lost out to Santos. Perhaps slightly more importantly, rivals Manchester United is the only English side to have ever won this competition.
Classic Fantasy Premier League Code: effv23
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