Liverpool look proper at dwelling within the Champions League they usually can just about put their toes up tonight, having already certified for the knockout levels. They’re already exhibiting indicators that they’re again to their dominant methods from 2017/18 and 2018/19, within the latter of which they gained their sixth European title.
There’s simply one thing about this Reds facet that’s to be feared among the many remainder of the competitors. Jurgen Klopp is among the most clever coaches when it comes the continent’s premier competitors and his crew, together with Chelsea, seem like the 2 strongest English sides to this point, with some very spectacular performances.
They bested the often imperious defence of Atletico Madrid, regardless of Diego Simeone’s finest efforts whereas they’ve additionally received the higher of AC Milan at Anfield. As a a end result they’ve taken most factors from their 4 video games in what was dubbed this yr’s group of dying, they usually have breezed by means of it with two video games to spare. Theoretically, this could make them a beneficial draw within the spherical of 16.
Liverpool are additionally blessed with having the expertise of reaching finals on this match. They may know higher than most simply the best way to adapt to the calls for of knockout soccer, and Klopp has at all times made certain his gamers are well-equipped for it. They’re sensible in breaking groups down, but in addition selecting groups off who overcommit to the assault, and it’s why they’re going to be considered one of, if not essentially the most feared facet to face on the street to the ultimate.
Klopp might face a setback within the type of fatigue from the African Cup of Nations with two of his main stars, Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mané, in motion. The AFCON is about to finish on 9 February and the knockout levels of the Champions League begin the next week. Liverpool’s attacking duo could also be forfeited from their first spherical of 16 conflict, nevertheless it shouldn’t be a difficulty.
As already talked about, Liverpool are prone to achieve a beneficial draw after already topping Group B, however Klopp has such a information of the sport that he might adapt his formation to the losses of Salah and Mané and the Reds would nonetheless possible flip in a commanding efficiency. There’s additionally the prospect that the duo might make an prompt return after their AFCON campaigns, which might instil much more concern into the groups left within the Champions League.
The ‘Egyptian King’, Salah is arguably the perfect participant on the planet at this present time and with how he’s enjoying for Liverpool this time period, you discover it very onerous to see him on the fallacious finish of a end result. Even when he wasn’t having his sharpest of video games within the away sport in opposition to Atletico Madrid, he nonetheless scored twice, together with his ice-cold second-half penalty being the match-winning strike.
With Manchester Metropolis having occasional striker issues, and Manchester United in deep water throughout the Champions League and Premier League, they don’t look as distinguished as Liverpool to go on and declare the 2021-22 title. Reigning champions Chelsea are the closest to Liverpool after thumping Juventus, however they’ve already tasted defeat within the group stage, and their assault doesn’t appear to have as a lot firepower because the Reds.
They might haven’t progressed previous the quarter-finals stage within the final two seasons, however Liverpool are trying way more like their Champions League-winning selves of 2019.