Published On: Sat, Aug 17th, 2019

Chelsea and Liverpool ‘punished’ for success – Premier League duo name-dropped in blast | Football | Sport

That’s the view of Paul Merson after the duo did battled it out for the UEFA Super Cup in midweek.

Liverpool won the Champions League last season while Chelsea lifted the Europa League.

But it took penalties after extra time to separate the pair in Istanbul with Liverpool winning their first trophy of the season.

Both sides are straight back into action this weekend with the Reds travelling to Southampton and Chelsea hosting Leicester.

But Merson believes they should have been given the weekend off after the long trip and draining fixture.

Paul Merson told the Daily Star: “Liverpool and Chelsea shouldn’t have to play this weekend after the Super Cup Final. They are being punished for being successful.

“It’s ridiculous they had to play extra time in that game anyway. To make teams do that so early in the season is asking for trouble.

“It made for a great spectacle for the neutral but it’s a nightmare for players and coaches. Some of the players looked dead on their feet.

“You have to remember some of these players aren’t fully fit anyway after playing in summer tournaments and that was the last thing they needed.

“Why couldn’t they have just sent it straight to penalties?

“Both teams have lots of players who have played a lot of football the last few months.

“Sadio Mane and N’Golo Kante both did really well but they can’t be 100 per cent match fit.”

Liverpool make the trip to St Mary’s today having got their season off to a flying start.

Jurgen Klopp’s side were 4-1 winners over Norwich last weekend before the Super Cup win.

And Merson believes that will see them through against the Saints.

Merson added: “Liverpool? They will be on a high after lifting another trophy, and they should have enough to beat Southampton.

“But it’s still unfair both teams have to play at all this weekend. The Premier League should have done them a favour and given them a break.”

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