Joe Gomez has declared himself fit for the 2017/18 season after spending the summer working hard to be ready to train under Jürgen Klopp during preseason.
Despite a brilliant start to his Liverpool career, Joe Gomez has spent the majority of his two years with the Merseyside outfit on the sidelines. The English defender has played just 270 minutes under Klopp so far and is determined to make his mark.
Gomez was part of the 22-man squad to return to Melwood on Wednesday morning but has been readying himself for the new season all summer in a bid to reach peak fitness.
Speaking to LFCTV, Gomez revealed where he is in his fitness programme as the Englishman looks to build on positive progress made in the off season.
“Obviously you have bits when you’re anxious about the running, because it’s going to be difficult,” he said after the squad’s initial tests.
“But it’s all part of it and you look forward to getting the balls out and going again.
“[Fitness is] the main thing. You don’t want to take it for granted because you enjoy your job and you enjoy being here, but it’s just nice to be on the pitch again.
“I’m 100 percent. I feel good, I feel fit, sharp, I’m in a good place mentally and physically.
“I just see it as a fresh start now to go again and attack this season.”
When asked if he would have an advantage over his teammates in that he’d spent the whole summer preparing for preseason, Gomez was modest in his reply.
“[There have been] a lot of tough periods, but I’m just grateful to be here and happy to go again, and it’s nice to be at a place like this to do it,” he continued.
“Everyone’s going to have done their work, and everyone has programmes, but we have to do the testing today and then push on from there.
“But it’s just about getting stronger as the pre-season progresses.”
Gomez will have an important role to play this season as Liverpool prepare to offload Mamadou Sakho. The Frenchman’s permanent departure means that Gomez will have a chance to fight his way into Klopp’s thinking for the future.
Having said that, Liverpool have plans to bring in a top centre half this summer which means Gomez will have his work cut out for him. Working hard in preseason will be the best way to impress Klopp.
A small 22-man group returned to Melwood today for medical assessment as Klopp and his coaching staff seek to ensure that none of their players have returned from the close season with injuries of any kind.