Lionel Messi. Cristiano Ronaldo. Dusan Tadić (?). Neymar. The top scorers in the 2018-19 Champions League season is a rogue’s gallery of the usual suspects (ex-Southampton flame out Tadić notwithstanding). Not until you get way down the list in a tie for 13th place, do you see the first Liverpool names: Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino.
Contrary to the narrative that the Reds rely solely on the vaunted front three of Salah, Mané and Firmino to bear the offensive burden, the numbers bear out that it was in fact the nine different Liverpool goal scorers in this year’s European competition who all played major roles in the journey to Madrid.
From Daniel Sturridge’s header to kick things off against PSG to James Milner’s nerveless penalties to Salah’s campaign-saving goal against Napoli to Mané embarrassing the great Bayern Munich with a golazo and to, of course, Gini Wijnaldum and Divock Origi’s monstrous pair of braces to down Barcelona in the greatest European match Anfield has seen. This return to the final has been a true team effort from top to bottom.
It’s almost here. C’mon number six, we have a place back home waiting for you.