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Wijnaldum outlines why he is expecting ‘really difficult matches’ against Atletico Madrid.

Georginio Wijnaldum has described Atletico Madrid as ‘fighters’ and says he is anticipating two ‘really difficult matches’ as Liverpool prepare to face the Spanish side in the last-16 of the Champions League.

Liverpool return to the scene of their Champions League final victory last season when they head to Madrid for the first leg of their last-16 tie on Tuesday night, the European Champions facing a difficult task in the first knock-out stage after being drawn to face Diego Simeone’s side.

Atletico have reached two finals in the past six editions of the tournament and will prove a huge test of the holder’s resolve to retain their title, Wijnaldum expecting two difficult encounters against a side he says has similar fighting spirit to the Merseyside club.

“They are a lot like us, fighters. They are a team more or less like us, also really difficult to beat,” Wijnaldum told UEFA, as per the official Liverpool website.

“I think you can see that in their playing style in the competition. They are always battling to get results and they can easily switch at times when it is necessary, they know what they have to do to win the match. So yes, these are going to be really difficult matches.”

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