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Liverpool Look to Olympiacos for Inspiration

Ten years ago, Liverpool had to beat Olympiacos to advance in the Champions League. Now, fans and players are looking to draw inspiration from that win.

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Ten years ago this week, Liverpool beat Olympiacos 3-1 to advance to the knockout rounds of the Champions League, salvaging a group stage campaign that appeared lost. They would, of course, go on to win the entire competition. The game, and Steven Gerrard's oh you beauty moment, ranks second only to the final itself in most fans' memories of that season.

Inevitably this week, with Liverpool looking to salvage a Champions League group stage campaign tonight that has increasingly appeared lost, that Olympiacos match has come up on more than a few occasions. Fans and players have referred back to that victory in 2004 for motivation or inspiration. For its ability to say that if Liverpool did this once, they can now do it again.

"It can help us as the fans will get behind us and, as we have seen in the past in Europe, it makes it easier to go forward," Simon Mignolet said when he asked what that famous result ten years ago could mean to the club on this Champions League night. "Everybody knows we have to get the result to go through to the next round, and the crown can help.

"The way they get behind us makes it easier for us and gives us that confidence, and they [can] push us forward like they have done plenty of times before. I'm sure they will be behind us again. I've had a few European nights at Anfield now under my belt and I'm sure Anfield will be up and ready again on Tuesday night."

Hopefully the supporters will be, though after a difficult first four months of the season, they may also be more than a little nervy. While expectations for the club were generally low heading into the 2004-05 season, with Liverpool looking to get back on track under a new manager, most expected something special this time around.

There's still time to turn this campaign into one that fans remember fondly, but having headed into the year with such high expectations means feelings of disappointment are far more widespread heading into tonight's match than Olympiacos ten years ago. A win tonight, though, might just be the thing to start to turn that disappointment into something more positive.

"We can't think about do or die scenarios as we just have to focus on ourselves and make sure we all do our jobs and be in the best place we possibly can to get the result," added Mignolet. "That's the only thing we can think of and we will see after the game if our performance is enough to get us through to the next round."

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