Journalism in the service of society

Liverpool’s Klopp not driven by revenge vs Madrid, hails Ancelotti, Vinicius

LIVERPOOL manager Jurgen Klopp has claimed that his side will not be thinking about last season’s final when they face Real Madrid in this term’s UEFA Champions League.

Real Madrid defeated Liverpool 1-0 to win their 14th Champions League title last June, and the two European giants will clash at Anfield tomorrow night in the first leg of the round of 16 tie.

Klopp insisted his players will not be motivated by the painful defeat in Paris as they seek to reach the quarter-finals.

“I don’t think we need the Paris Champions League final to make tomorrow’s game special,” he said during his pre-match press conference today.

“We lost that match and the good thing about this sport is that it gives you a chance to make up.”

The German believes Liverpool, who recently overcame poor form to win two matches in a row, must produce a near-perfect display to advance past the most successful club in the competition’s history.

“We need to play two super games. If you don’t play at your best, you don’t have a chance,” he noted.

“If Real Madrid don’t play at their best, they still have a chance. That’s the difference.

“Some of their players have won the competition five times. They will probably think they own it, but we will give it a try.”

Klopp had words of praise for his opposite number Carlo Ancelotti, who has won the Champions League title twice with the Spanish side.

He said: “Carlo is the most relaxed manager I’ve ever met in my life. One of the best people you can meet — fantastic, humble person and nice. His man management is on a completely different level to all of us.

“I respect and admire that a lot. They have a world-class team and brought in super exciting young players.”

On Vinicius Junior, who was the subject of vile racist abuse over the weekend, Klopp said: “Nothing in the world can justify that [racial abuse].

“As far as I know, he is a world class player, you should not leave him in one versus one situations. I hope he’s not focused on those idiots.”

In team news, Klopp had a positive update for Liverpool fans on Darwin Nunez, who was taken off with a knock during Saturday’s 2-0 Premier League win at Newcastle United.

“There’s a chance for tomorrow night. We will see how he is later and then make a decision,” he said.

Comments are closed.

Naija Times