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Liverpool and Arsenal set for showdown

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Liverpool and Arsenal set for showdown

50-50 Challenge
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By ESPN Staff

Dalglish unhappy with start date

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish has expressed concern about the new fixture list with the upcoming season scheduled to start just three days after a round of international matches.

• 2011/12: Champions start at West Brom
• Prem Lge |  ChampL1L2

The Premier League campaign is slated to kick-off on Saturday August 13, less than 72 hours after several players have competed in a host of friendlies.

On the Wednesday leading up to the new season, England play Holland at Wembley, Scotland host Denmark and the Republic of Ireland face Croatia, as well as numerous other friendlies also taking place on that date involving teams from Europe and the rest of the world.

Dalglish believes it would have made more sense to push the start of the season back a day, even though it would negatively impact on television coverage.

"There's not a lot you can say about the fixture list really but I would ask why the season is starting on a Saturday when there are international friendlies the midweek before,'' the Scot told Liverpool's official website. "Clubs are doing their best to bring in good players and that usually means they are international players."

"There is a free week after the first weekend so I don't understand why we can't start the season on a Sunday to prevent players having to travel back on a Wednesday night in time for a Saturday start. If you are going to have international games then have them but surely it makes sense to put the league games back a day if it's possible. To me it's common sense.''

The Liverpool boss will be eager to improve on his squads' sixth place finish in the Premier League table last season, four points behind Europa League-bound Tottenham. The Reds will open their new campaign at home against Steve Bruce's Sunderland.

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