Brendan Rodgers says the Premier League could do more to help its teams in Europe, pointing to Porto’s win over Chelsea as proof of the problem.
English clubs have failed to make waves in either the Champions League or Europa League in recent seasons, raising the possibility that the Premier League could lose one of its four places in UEFA’s flagship competition before long.
Rodgers, whose Liverpool side host FC Sion in the Europa League on Thursday night, believes more could be done, pointing out that Porto were allowed to play their Primeira Liga game a day earlier than usual before facing Chelsea, who they beat 2-1 in Portugal on Tuesday.
“I think they could do more to support the teams in Europe,” Rodgers said. “It happens with the other federations and in other countries. They help. That doesn’t happen in this country.
“You see Porto. Porto played on Friday, they had dispensation to move their game, so that keeps them fresh. I also think the big teams abroad can sometimes win games at 70% and conserve their energy and be fresh. There is no game in the Premier League where you can do that.
“Chelsea will come back and have a tough game at Southampton this weekend. There is no easy game in the Premier League. The physicality and the intensity of the games is like no other league.
“In other countries, some of the big teams can change five, six, seven players and still win the game and field a real strong team for the next game. They have got a domestic competition less too. We have two cup competitions in this country, the others have one. It all adds up to it being difficult for the Premier League teams.
“But it is something that we have to cope with and we respect that challenge. It means you have to monitor your players and get the best out of the ones who are available.”