Jurgen Klopp was forced to select a whopping 39 players in his first season at Liverpool as he navigated the club through four different competitions.
Liverpool played 63 games in 2015-16, a result of their runs to the League Cup and Europa League finals.
But the Reds do not have European football to look forward to next season. As exciting as European campaigns can be - and Liverpool’s run to the Europa League final was extraordinary - they often are a burden on the team’s domestic hopes.
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Klopp’s team finished eighth in the Premier League and the additional games can’t have helped with players’ energy levels. The German’s system requires incredible fitness levels but by May 18 - the date of their 3-1 loss to Sevilla in Basel - the players were nearly running on empty.
A full pre-season under Klopp will help, as will the addition of fitness specialist Andreas Kornmayer from Bayern Munich.
But perhaps the biggest boost to Liverpool’s hopes of finishing in the top four next season will be the absence of European football.
Klopp realises that he probably won’t need 39 different players next campaign and is making plans to cut his squad.
Jordon Ibe and Martin Skrtel have been sold, while Jose Enrique and Kolo Toure have been released.
Balotelli and Benteke are out
And the exodus will continue in the coming weeks, with Klopp reportedly telling six players to leave the club or face sitting on the bench.
According to the Mirror, the former Borussia Dortmund manager has told Christian Benteke to find a new club and also wants to shift Lucas, Adam Bogdan, Tiago Ilori, Mario Balotelli and Lazar Markovic.
Benteke’s proposed move to Crystal Palace broke down when the club’s couldn’t agree a fee but Sadio Mane’s arrival has pushed him further down the pecking order.
"A few things will happen, I'm pretty sure," Klopp, who replaced Brendan Rodgers in October, said. “I don't know exactly what but on both sides.
“It makes no sense to stay in the squad and be in the squad when you don't have a real opportunity to play.
"When there's no chance to play, it makes absolutely no sense.
"We have a few players, maybe, who want to leave us and I'm pretty sure that will happen. And one or two more players will join us from other clubs.
"It's a long time until the 31st of August and we have to work a little bit."
Fans will be impressed with Klopp’s work so far in the window. The arrival of Joel Matip adds steel to the defence and there are a plethora of attacking options.
One more midfielder - possibly Udinese’s Piotr Zielinski - and Liverpool can be confident of achieving their goals for next season.
Will Liverpool finish in the top four next season? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!
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