Liverpool are not on a revenge mission when they visit Real Madrid’s for Tuesday’s Champions League quarterfinal first leg and will only focus on getting another step closer to a seventh European crown, manager Jurgen Klopp said.
Real Madrid ran out 3-1 winners against Liverpool in their last meeting in the 2018 final but the result was overshadowed by Sergio Ramos’ challenge on Mohamed Salah, causing an injury to the Egyptian forward who ended up leaving the field in tears.
Klopp conceded the quarterfinal draw brought back memories of the game in Kyiv but said he has moved on and his players will be treating the game like any other European knockout tie.
“My motivation is at the highest level because we play in the Champions League, we want to go to the next round and we play Real Madrid,” Klopp told a news conference on Monday.
“It was for us a strange night but it was long ago and I cannot get that anger back so I don’t even try. What I try is to prepare my team for tomorrow to show how good we are as a football team in a strange season and a difficult season.
“We are not on a revenge tour here. Life is like this. I don’t believe too much in revenge, but it would be nice to get through.”
Klopp said he is relishing the prospect of facing an attack-minded Real side and his players accept the “challengers” tag ahead of the first leg at the Alfredo di Stefano Stadium.
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) April 4, 2021
“We face a football-playing side which is very helpful for football in general but for our defending as well,” Klopp said. “That’s why we have a chance.
“I heard outside everyone said Real Madrid are the favourites, no problem with that. They are used to the role and we have no problem with the role of the challengers.”