Liverpool and Real Madrid are all set to battle it out in the second leg of the Champions League quarter-finals on Wednesday. Real Madrid demolished Liverpool in the first leg winning the match by a convincing scoreline of 3-1. Even though, Real Madrid was playing without their first-choice center-back pairing managed to stop the attack of Liverpool. The winner is going to face Chelsea in the semi-finals.
This will be Real Madrid’s third visit to Anfield to face Liverpool in the European competition. They lost 0-4 in 2009 but won 0-3 during the group stage game in 2014. Real Madrid has won 15 out of their previous 16 knockout round ties when winning the first leg by 2+ goals with the exception being the 2003-04 quarter-final against Monaco (4-2 in the first leg,1-3 in the second leg ).
Five of Liverpool’s 11 home defeats in UCL have come against Spanish opponents, while Real Madrid could become the second side to win away against the reds twice in the competition after Barcelona.
Liverpool should have midfielder Curtis Jones back for Wednesday’s crunch Champions League quarter-final second leg with Real Madrid. Jones missed Saturday’s Premier League victory over Aston Villa with a muscular strain but he is expected to return to the Liverpool squad. Jordan Henderson will miss the tie as he is not fully fit yet, while Virgil Van Dijk and Joe Gomez remain long-term absentees for the English club.
Real Madrid has added Lucas Vazquez to their lengthy injury list ahead of Wednesday’s trip to Anfield. Madrid is skeptical about the fitness of Federico Valverde after bruising his foot though he is expected to recover. Eden Hazard, Raphael Varane, and Sergio Ramos are out of this game as they are battling coronavirus.
Liverpool: Alisson Becker; Alexander-Arnold, Ozan Kabak, Phillips, Robertson; Thiago, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Ferminho, Mané
Real Madrid: Courtois; Odriozola, Nacho, Militao, Mendy; Kroos, Casemiro, Modric; Asensio, Benzema, Vinícius Júnior
What did managers say?
Jurgen Klopp, Liverpool manager: “When you are 3-1 down it looks like we are already out; it means we have not a lot to lose. We will give it a try – that’s the job we have to do. If we can create more than we did in Madrid – which should be possible as we didn’t have a lot – then we will see. We cannot take comebacks for granted especially with no crowd. We will create our own atmosphere again.”
Zinedine Zidane, Real Madrid manager: “We’ve come here to win, and that’s what we are going to try and do. We’ve spoken about how after the first leg and Barcelona at the weekend we put a lot into the games physically, but we’re used to that kind of effort. This side always pulls together whenever its backs are against the wall and that shows the character we have. We are going to fight all the way on two fronts. We are alive in both competitions and we will go for them until the end.”
Liverpool 2-0 Real Madrid
Liverpool has managed to come up with big performances in Europe consistently. After breaking the dreadful run at Anfield on Saturday against Aston Villa, Jurgen Klopp’s men should be favourite to overturn the deficit against a tired Real Madrid side.