Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is adamant he has to take a stand over the mid-winter break and FA Cup replays or nothing will ever change in the future.
The Reds boss has drawn criticism for announcing neither his first-team players nor himself will be present for the fourth-round replay at home to Shrewsbury next week as it falls within their scheduled Premier League break.
Instead the club will send out a youth team led by Under-23 coach Neil Critchley.
“If we react how we always react and find a way to do it, then nothing will change,” said Klopp. “I have to make decisions that aren’t popular, based on the situation we are in.
“Because we plan long-term I cannot plan when there is a real decisive period coming up. I decided three weeks ago we would have a mid-season break based on a letter we got in April 2019.
“The FA tried to move games to midweek to decrease the intense period. Whoever was involved in that – maybe from us – they forgot to say no.”