Alexis Mac Allister has admitted he struggled to stay awake during a Liverpool team meeting ahead of their clash with Manchester City due to jet leg.
The midfielder was one of a number of South American players who arrived back in England in the early hours of Wednesday morning, with three Man City and Liverpool stars playing a part in a World Cup qualifier between Brazil and Argentina that kicked off at 12.30am BST on November 22.
Speaking after the Reds’ hard fought 1-1 draw at the Etihad Stadium, Mac Allister discussed the effects of his late return from international duty with Argentina.
“Honestly, it is so hard to play like this. We were in a meeting talking about Man City and the way we wanted to play, and I couldn’t keep my eyes open,” he said.
“It’s very tough. Jet lag, long trip, but it is what it is. We like playing football, it’s what we want, to win, and that’s why we did our best [at City].”
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp was notably furious with the decision to move the trip to City to 12.30pm on Saturday, and vented his fury to the press ahead of the November international break.
“How can you put a game like this on Saturday at 12.30pm? Honestly, the people making the decisions, they cannot feel football. It is just not possible. This is the moment the world pays the most to see a football game. And by the way, the players will all come back on the same plane, all the South American players, picking them up from different countries,” he said.
“You have to fight your way through the most difficult league in the world and be ready on Thursday and on Sunday, and Thursday. And if the Premier League has the opportunity to do it, be ready on Saturday at 12.30pm!”
Despite jet lag, the likes of Mac Allister put in impressive showings in the draw with Man City at the Etihad Stadium – a draw which keeps the Reds within touching distance of the top of the Premier League table.