Liverpool coach Klopp glad for timing of Real Madrid clash

Liverpool coach Jurgen Klopp said on Monday that he believes his side’s form could have come good just in time for the first leg of their UEFA Champions League last-16 clash against Real Madrid at Anfield on Tuesday.

The repeat of last season’s final comes on the back of Liverpool’s 2-0 win at home against Everton and Saturday’s 2-0 win away to high-flying Newcastle United.

Those results follow a poor start to the year which saw Liverpool knocked out of the FA Cup by Brighton and a 3-0 defeat against Wolves two weeks ago.

Speaking in his pre-game press conference, Klopp admitted the game against Real Madrid had come at the right time.

“I’m really happy we can play now: four weeks ago it would have been different, but life is all about timing. Maybe we’ve found our feet right in time for this game,” said Klopp.

However, despite being happy at the timing of the match, Klopp added that he was under no illusions about the task that his side faces against the reigning European champions.

“We have these two results [against Everton and Newcastle] and hopefully we can build on that, but we need to play a super game – we need to play two super games to get through. I have no problem with that because if you don’t play your best, you don’t have a chance – Real Madrid don’t have to play their best and still have a chance! That’s the difference,” explained Klopp.

The German admitted he had not watched a repeat of last season’s final, which Real Madrid won 1-0, until recently.

“I didn’t watch it back until this weekend: it was torture. We played a good game and could have won the game. They scored a decisive goal and we didn’t, and that was the reason.”

“But this is now, same clubs, different teams, different times,” he concluded. ■

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