Saturday, 23 March, 2019

Liverpool are back on the big stage with Bayern win-Klopp

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
Cassandra Castillo | 14 March, 2019, 18:55

The fact they went out at the last-16 stage for only the second time since 2011 said as much about Liverpool as it did about an ageing team in need of significant rebuilding.

Van Dijk then chipped in to discuss Liverpool's performance, highlighting his partnership with Joel Matip as a key factor in their latest triumph. "We conceded one, but everyone could see it was possible [for us to win]".

"It's a big, big step for us".

"We again set a mark for this wonderful club, that we really are back on the landscape of global top football. I knew we had a chance and the boys made it happen". We found that and that makes me feel really proud and happy.

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.

"Sadio is on fire". But while the Senegalese forward maintained his hot streak by taking his recent goal haul to 10 in 10 games with his double against Bayern - and remarkably half of all 16 goals the Merseysiders have scored in their eight games since the start of February - the real star of the show for Liverpool was Van Dijk. "Hopefully that continues for the rest of the season".

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

I would love to say that Liverpool came and were just too clever and sat in a great spot.

Here we compare our player ratings with those from the Liverpool Echo, the Mirror, the Guardian, Sky Sports, Anfield Index, FotMob and the This Is Anfield readers.

Bayern went above Dortmund and back to the top of the Bundesliga last weekend for the first time since September.

United's unexpected victory over PSG also ensures that they will be regarded as a risky outsider in Friday's draw, but while it's inevitable that the focus will be on the prospect of a first English Champions League victor this season since Chelsea in 2012, it would be wise to consider the threat posed by Messi and Ronaldo, with Barca and Juve respectively, to Premier League ambitions.

Information from Reuters was used in this report.

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