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Liverpool vs Manchester United: Whose players travelled furthest on international duty?

Liverpool vs Manchester United: Whose players travelled furthest on international duty?

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Manchester United's visit to face Liverpool heralds the return of the Premier League after the second international break of the season, but which club's players travelled the furthest to represent their country?

Jose Mourinho has previously expressed his concern at having a lack of control over his squad during such fortnights, but a deeper look at the travel map may cause Jurgen Klopp more angst ahead of Saturday's clash, live on Sky Sports Premier League.

Both sides have been forced to alter their preparations after Sadio Mane and Marouane Fellaini picked up injuries for the respective countries during crucial World Cup Qualifiers.
Accounting for those setbacks, United will have 13 players available for selection arriving back at Carrington, having travelled 67,424 miles between them. In comparison, Liverpool's 18 fully fit international players will have travelled 72,456 miles.

Both Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino travelled the furthest in the Liverpool squad, clocking up 13,584 miles each. The Brazilians had already been to La Paz for a 0-0 draw with Bolivia, in which Coutinho played 66 minutes and were in Sao Paulo for the 3-0 win over Chile in the early hours of Wednesday morning - with Firmino replacing Coutinho in the 86th minute.

Philippe Coutinho and Roberto Firmino have travelled the furthest for Liverpool
Klopp will have to make a decision on whether to start the pair in the Saturday lunchtime kick-off, with the manager's conundrum made harder by Mane's absence.

The Senegal international suffered a hamstring injury in his country's 2-0 win over Cape Verde but Mo Salah will be buoyed on his return from travelling 4,495 miles to and from his native Egypt, scoring the dramatic stoppage-time penalty to defeat Congo 2-1 in Alexandria which booked his place at the World Cup.

Of the 18 Liverpool players in the matchday squad for the 1-1 draw at Newcastle, Alberto Moreno, Joel Matip, Loris Karius and James Milner were the only international absentees.

Conversely, United's Sergio Romero, Victor Lindelof, Matteo Darmian and Chris Smalling clocked up a total of 22,214 miles but have made two Premier League starts between them this season.

Mo Salah scored twice against Congo to send Egypt to the World Cup
And crucially, four of United's potential starters at Anfield have all been enjoying a few days off this week after not being selected by their national teams.

Anthony Martial, Juan Mata, Ander Herrera and Ashley Young have all stayed at home and they were joined by Phil Jones who returned from England camp to recover from a knock that he has overcome after two weeks' rest.

But the international break has created an added problem for Mourinho, with Belgian Marouane Fellaini suffering knee ligament damage against Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Antonio Valencia and Eric Bailly are among the players returning from long flights
Belgium manager Roberto Martinez also risked the wrath of Mourinho by bringing on Romelu Lukaku in the 4-0 win over Cyprus on Tuesday night, but the striker suffered no recurrence of an ankle injury picked up against Crystal Palace.

Captain Antonio Valencia clocked up 15,300 miles, more than any Liverpool player, and he is a key player who will be fighting jet lag like Firmino and Coutinho on return to training. The Ecuador international played 90 minutes in the 2-1 defeat by Chile but was suspended for the 3-1 loss against Argentina, although he did travel to Quito meaning fatigue will still be an issue.

Romero fared better as Argentina booked their spot at Russia 2018, but he is set to be among the substitutes on Saturday, regardless of the 15,341 miles he travelled - accounting for 22 percent of the club's total distance travelled during international week.

United No 1 David De Gea enjoyed a successful break as Spain booked their place at the World Cup next summer, and he played 180 minutes across his country's two games, clocking up 5,490 miles across wins against Albania and in Israel.
Defensive team-mate Eric Bailly travelled 5,686 miles for the Ivory Coast's 0-0 draw in Mali while Henrikh Mkhitaryan travelled the third-furthest at 6,820 miles for games against Poland and Kazakhstan. Both are in line for starting berths this weekend as Mourinho's men look to go the distance at the home of their fierce rivals.

After the last international break in September, 10-man Liverpool capitulated in the 5-0 defeat by Manchester City, while United were far from their fluent best in the 2-2 draw at Stoke.

 

Liverpool vs Manchester United: Individual and team distances travelled

ClubNameNationTotal Miles
Man Utd Sergio Romero Argentina 15340.93
Man Utd Antonio Valencia Ecuador 15299.73
Liverpool Philippe Coutinho Brazil 13584.12
Liverpool Roberto Firmino Brazil 13584.12
Man Utd Henrikh Mkhitaryan Armenia 6819.58
Man Utd Eric Bailly Ivory Coast 5686.2
Man Utd David de Gea Spain 5489.92
Liverpool Ben Woodburn Wales 4787.81
Liverpool Danny Ward Wales 4787.81
Liverpool Mo Salah Egypt 4494.62
Liverpool Ragnar Klaven Estonia 4400.15
Liverpool Dejan Lovren Croatia 3209.71
Liverpool Marko Grujic Serbia U21 2775.98
Man Utd Matteo Darmian Italy 2637.11
Liverpool Georgino Wijnaldum Netherlands 2590.04
Man Utd Daley Blind Netherlands 2590.04
Liverpool Jordan Henderson England 2391.13
Liverpool Daniel Sturridge England 2391.13
Liverpool Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain England 2391.13
Man Utd Chris Smalling England 2391.13
Man Utd Jesse Lingard England 2391.13
Man Utd Marcus Rashford England 2391.13
Man Utd Nemanja Matic Serbia 2381.03
Liverpool Simon Mignolet Belgium 2344.2
Man Utd Romelu Lukaku Belgium 2297.93
Liverpool Andrew Robertson Scotland 2155.77
Man Utd Victor Lindelof Sweden 1886.21
Liverpool Joe Gomez England U21 1733.96
Liverpool Trent Alexander-Arnold England U21 1733.96
Liverpool Dominic Solanke England U21 1733.96
Liverpool Emre Can Germany 1365.85
  TOTAL LIVERPOOL 72, 456
    MAN UTD 67,424
 

Source: skysports.com

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