Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp has hailed his sides incredible development ahead of tomorrow nights Champions League quarter-final clash against Porto at Anfield.
The Reds have been in superb form domestically, losing just one Premier League game all season, and are currently fighting out a fascinating title race with Man City.
Klopp’s side finished as runners up in Champions League last year, losing to Real Madrid in the final. On their way to Kiev, they hammered Porto 5-0 away in the round of 16, and the Reds’ German coach is aware that the Portuguese side may well use that heavy defeat as motivation.
“Our development has been incredible,” Klopp told his pre-match press conference.
“The Europa League ride was brilliant until Basel (2016 final loss to Sevilla) and the Champions League was exactly the same until Kiev (2018 final loss to Real Madrid).
“We have much more positive moments in these competitions than negative. And that helps the team but that doesn’t mean anything for the game tomorrow night, only that we are now a bit more experienced and we saw that in the second game against Bayern (in the last 16).
“Everyone was like, when we drew here in the 0-0 first leg that ‘that’s not enough’. We didn’t even think it. It was clear we had a chance in Munich and we used that chance. Now we have to face Porto with exactly the same respect, nothing is different.
“They are a very experienced team, they are together with Benfica first in the table in Portugal.
“Really strong side, more experienced than last season, so it’s a different game to last year. We have to play it again and we want to play it again.
“We were very clinical that night (the 5-0 win). But they can use the game last year as a motivational thing, we cannot do that.
“When we analysed them (Porto) last season no-one thought it would be 5-0 but in that situation we were difficult to deal with.
“It can be a bit of a wild game as they are good at counter-pressing, creative in midfield and full-backs are good crossers.”