Wednesday, 19 June, 2019


Jürgen Klopp: Liverpool back as European force

Liverpool players celebrate following Sadio Mane's third goal against Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena APLiverpool players celebrate following Sadio Mane's third goal against Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena
Hannah Rogers | 14 March, 2019, 19:55

Virgil van Dijk headed Liverpool into a deserved lead in the 69th minute before Mane ended any hopes of a Bayern fightback with a late far-post header from Mo Salah's cross.

That £75 million Liverpool paid for him is starting to look like a bargain.

Liverpool overcame Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich in the Champions League last 16 inside the Allianz Arena on Wednesday evening, and after the match fans were quick to praise a star man in the victory.

On a night were Liverpool had many outstanding performers, Klopp also paid tribute to Sadio Mane, scorer of the first goal.

Although some pointed out that each of the teams are managed by different nationalities - with Argentinian Mauricio Pochettino at Spurs, Norway's Ole Gunnar Solskjaer at United, Germany's Jurgen Klopp at Liverpool, and Spain's Pep Guardiola at City - and not to mention a mass of foreign players in the ranks.

They might have kept a clean sheet against Bayern at Anfield three weeks ago, despite being without the suspended Van Dijk, but the 27-year-old's return to the heart of the defence for this game was transformative for Liverpool.

Virgil van Dijk outjleaps the Bayern defence to head in Liverpool's second goal from James Milner's cross
GETTY IMAGESVirgil van Dijk outjleaps the Bayern defence to head in Liverpool's second goal from James Milner's cross

"We knew that it would be a very tough game, but I think in both games we were playing too defensive", the Poland worldwide told Viasport.

"Scoring three here is really hard - actually we scored four because we scored the other one as well!" he told a post-match news conference.

Bayern Munich defender Mats Hummels heads clear under pressure from Liverpool's Roberto Firmino.

Van Dijk has made a total of 37 club appearances this season, keeping a remarkable 19 clean sheets in that time. You saw a set-piece can be decisive in a match like this. We played at home, but that wasn't our game and that's why they beat us. "He is still young enough to get better".

"There's going to be many times in the Champions League you'll come up against world-class strikers, and he's the player you need to put them to sleep".

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