‘It was rubbish,’ says Liverpool’s new manager ahead of the club’s return to the Champions League.
There have been fifteen European Cup victories. There were a total of 25 final appearances. As well as a slew of national titles and trophies.
When the draw for the Champions League’s first round was made last month, all eyes were drawn to the glamorous group, which included Liverpool.
The Reds have been placed in the toughest section of the competition, alongside Spanish champions Atletico Madrid, Italian giants AC Milan, and seasoned Portuguese campaigners Porto.
Former Liverpool winger Steve McManaman, a two-time winner of the tournament with Real Madrid, believes Jurgen Klopp’s side should not be intimidated by such historically strong opponents.
He says, “The names are big, but I don’t think the way they’re playing is big.” “It shouldn’t have an impact on Liverpool.
As a revamped AC Milan casts aside old failings, Liverpool is set to break new ground in the Champions League.
“I don’t believe Liverpool will have too many problems. Milan were second in a bad Italian league, but they didn’t bother me. Similarly, Porto is not the same Porto that Liverpool thrashed two or three years ago.
“Atletico Madrid has brought in Antoine Griezmann, who will help them, but you already know what you’ll get from them. They’ll play defense and try to score a goal.
“But for every player you name in the Atletico Madrid team, I can name someone in the Liverpool team who I think is better. But they will be tough to beat.
“I’d be very surprised if Liverpool can’t qualify from this group.”
Liverpool begin their Champions League campaign with the visit of AC Milan this evening, the first time the teams have met in a competitive fixture outside the finals they fought out in 2005 and 2007, winning one each.
Not since the home second round defeat to Atletico Madrid in March 2020 at the start of the coronavirus pandemic have the Reds played in front of a crowd in European competition.
And McManaman says: “Everybody is looking forward to a great Champions League night once again at Anfield. It was after the Atletico Madrid game last year that the world stopped.
“Those Champions League nights are very special. I’ve witnessed them many times, but the people I take along to games.” Summary ends.”