Arne Slot faces disappointment that has direct impact on Liverpool roster

Arne Slot is looking forward to his first season in charge of Liverpool
-Credit: (Image: John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Arne Slot faced his first minor setback as Liverpool's head coach when he met his new squad at the AXA Training Centre last week.

With the summer tournaments of Euro 2024 and Copa America claiming 14 of his players, Slot was greeted by a depleted group. More disappointment followed for the new gaffer after the Netherlands, his country, lost to England in the semifinals of Euro 2024 on Wednesday. A last-minute goal from Ollie Watkins saw the Dutch team knocked out at Borussia Dortmund's Signal Iduna Park.

As a result, Slot be meeting with Virgil van Dijk, Cody Gakpo and Ryan Gravenberch sooner than expected. The trio are due for a three-week break before they report for pre-season training in early August. It remains to be seen whether they'll join their teammates in the United States during their pre-season tour or wait until they return to the AXA Training Centre.

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On the other hand, Trent Alexander-Arnold and Joe Gomez are heading to Sunday's final against Spain in Berlin, which means they'll definitely miss the US tour. They're likely to return less than two weeks before the new Premier League season kicks off.

The same goes for Alexis Mac Allister and Luis Diaz, who will be playing in the Copa America final on Sunday when Argentina takes on Colombia. Despite Uruguay's semifinal defeat, there is still a third-place play-off to navigate in the continental tournament. Darwin Nunez is expected to play in that game.

Despite the disappointment of the Netherlands' semifinal exit, there's a silver lining for Liverpool's head coach as he plans internal discussions with some of his inherited players. While Gakpo's performance against England might not have turned heads, he's been a standout for the Netherlands at Euro 2024.

Interestingly, Gakpo has shone on the left flank for his country, netting three goals and an assist, which is a shift from his usual central role at Liverpool. This has sparked conversations about his optimal position at Anfield.

Manager Slot has his thoughts but prefers to discuss it with Gakpo first. Discussions with Alexander-Arnold regarding his role are on hold, while new sporting director Richard Hughes may also seek talks with Liverpool's vice-captain, whose contract runs until 2025.

Meanwhile, negotiations concerning Van Dijk's future, with his contract expiring next summer, are set to become more pressing. Jurgen Klopp apparently had heart-to-heart talks wit Van Dijk about his intentions to stay on board the Anfield ship. says: Slot, as a proud Dutchman, would've been gutted to see the Netherlands lose at Euro 2024. Yet Liverpool is on course to get through the summer's international tournaments without an major injuries. If that's still the case after Sunday, Slot will be delighted!