In the first round of the 2021/22 Champions League knockout stage, Liverpool and Real Madrid will meet again in the first leg of the last 16 at Anfield on Tuesday.
Jürgen Klopp’s side finished second in Group A behind Italy’s Napoli and will face the champions after defeating Celtic, Shakhtar Donetsk and RB Leipzig.
While Vinicius Junior’s goals and Thibaut Courtois’ sensational saves dominated the commentary on last year’s Champions League final between Liverpool and Real Madrid, the game at the Stade de France was a blast for Reds fans.
will forever be overshadowed by the harrowing scene of being trapped outside the gate and tear gassed before the game.
But Klopp’s loyal supporters can head into Tuesday’s match with renewed hope, after an independent report exonerated Liverpool supporters and said ‘primary responsibility’ lay with UEFA.
Few teams can boast of overtaking Napoli this season, but goal difference was the only thing that separated the two sides in the Group A standings, with Liverpool scoring between a possible 18 and 15, before giving up to Parthenopei on opening day. They have won 5 straight from the humiliation of losing 4–1.
Back-to-back Premier League victories over Everton and Newcastle United, the latter thanks to goals from Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo, see Liverpool move into the top four and seem to have turned 2023 off their dismal start.
Klopp’s team has only lost once in the last 16 of the Champions League in the past five years (to Real Madrid’s neighbor Atlético Madrid in 2019/20) and Liverpool’s unbeaten record at Anfield is unbeaten. It’s been going great with 7 games so far.
Real Madrid, who left Chelsea, Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City to win the European Cup for a record 14th time, will be left out on the continent despite their less-than-perfect results in the group stage. I don’t think so.
A draw with Shakhtar Donetsk and a loss to RB Leipzig put the Whites in danger of finishing as usual, but a 5–1 victory over Celtic on the final day saw Leipzig pass Leipzig by one point. , and then the Club World Cup, adding another title to its illustrious trophy cabinet.
Carlo Ancelotti’s side beat Osasuna 2–0 with second-half goals from Federico Valverde and Marco Asensio to record their fourth straight La Liga win (only three shots in the first half). , the hopes of winning back-to-back league and Champions League titles have already come to an end.
Liverpool fans are also happy with Real Madrid’s volatile away record.
Liverpool’s defeat to Real Madrid in last season’s final lasted six games without a win in the Champions League, the longest ever for an opponent without a win in the Champions League. Fans are even more jubilant at Anfield now that this corruption seems to have ended.
Last weekend’s victory over Newcastle came at a huge price, with Darwin Nunez having been sidelined an hour earlier with a sore shoulder.
If Nunez is absent, Diogo Jota and Roberto Firmino will have a tough fight to form the attacking line-up, but if Klopp uses Gakpo at centre, the former will win the head-to-head clash. likely to.
Luis Diaz, Ibrahima Konate, Thiago Alcantara and Calvin Ramsey confirm Liverpool’s absence, Arthur remains out as he recovers from thigh surgery, and teenage Stephane Bajetic faces the European champions. It seems that he will challenge the battle suitable for the starting pitcher.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid will be without star player Karim Benzema, who did not play against Osasuna due to muscle fatigue. But Ancelotti hopes the Ballon d’Or winner will be perfectly fit on Tuesday after getting some much-needed rest.
Elsewhere, key midfielders Aurelien Chouameni and Toni Kroos are out due to illness, leaving Eduardo Camavinga and Dani Ceballos the possibility to play.
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