Jurgen Klopp has given assurance that Liverpool will not be on a revenge mission in their Champions League quarterfinal first leg against Real Madrid today.
The Reds were beaten 3-1 by Real in the 2018 final – the last time they met in the competition.
In that game, Mohamed Salah was injured by a challenge from Sergio Ramos and left the field in tears.
“My motivation is at the highest level because it’s the Champions League,” said Klopp in a quote from BBC Sports.
“This has nothing to do with 2018 but when I got the draw – because it’s the first time we played Real Madrid since then – of course I remembered the game.
“I said after that game that if somebody asked me a week later or a month later if I would invite Sergio Ramos to my 60th birthday, then I would say no. I would think about it again.
“He’s a great footballer but I didn’t like what happened that night. It was a strange night for us but it’s long ago and I cannot get that feeling back, that anger or whatever, so I don’t even try.
“We are not on a revenge tour here. I don’t believe too much in revenge, but it would be nice to get through, because it would mean we are in the next round.”
“We face a football-playing side which is very helpful for football in general but for our defending as well, that’s why we have a chance,” added Klopp, whose side come into the game off the back of an impressive 3-0 win at Arsenal that left them within two points of the Premier League top four.
“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.”
Klopp will largely have the same squad available to him that beat Arsenal, with midfielder Jordan Henderson and defenders Joel Matip, Joe Gomez and Virgil van Dijk all ruled out.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid have suffered another blow as Raphael Varane test positive for coronavirus hours before the Liverpool match.
Los Blancos will also be without Sergio Ramos who sustained a thigh injury during training.