Madrid our destiny: Klopp

Liverpool's German manager Jurgen Klopp watches his players warm up ahead of the English FA Cup fourth round football match between Liverpool and Cardiff City at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on February 6, 2022.

Jurgen Klopp says playing Real Madrid in the Champions League final feels like destiny and the Liverpool boss insists Manchester City will be ready for Sunday’s clash with Newcastle.

Liverpool trail Manchester City by a point and can put the pressure back on the reigning champions with a positive result against top-four chasing Tottenham on Saturday.

City suffered an agonising Champions League semi-final defeat to Real Madrid in midweek, with the Spanish side now Liverpool’s opponents in Paris later this month in a repeat of the 2018 final, which Real won 3-1.

When we lost that final, my ideal solution was to play Real Madrid again. Madrid seems to be our destiny,” Klopp said ahead of the visit of Spurs.

It was strange and (the game and the result was) unlucky for City. They (Real) got through PSG, Chelsea and Man City (to get to the final). If you knock out these three guys then you deserve to be there. Yeah, it will be great. That we were not happy that night (in Kyiv in 2018) is clear, but that was a while ago. But I am happy to go there and give it a try, but until then there are a lot of games.

Pep Guardiola’s side had a two-goal advantage on aggregate after 89 minutes of Wednesday’s second leg against Madrid, but Rodrygo’s two goals in the 90th and 91st minutes took the tie to extra time before Karim Benzema scored a penalty early in the first period to knock out City.

But Klopp doubts City’s players will be suffering a hangover from the defeat on Sunday when Newcastle arrive at the Etihad Stadium.

It was a massive blow. I think everyone was ready to switch off the TV,” Klopp said. “It was really harsh, I can imagine. I had nights like this, not cool but they will be ready for Sunday.

Spurs also have a lot riding on the game, with a place in next season’s Champions League firmly in their sights. Klopp is braced for a difficult encounter against Antonio Conte’s team on Saturday. Klopp said: “It’s a massive, massive test.” 

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