It’s natural, perhaps, for some to hope for an easier draw in a knockout cup competition; an easier path to the finals, at which point anything could be possible. This Liverpool side, though, believe that in the Champions League this year, they are the tough draw.
Rather than being worried about who they might draw, it’s their potential opponents who will be worried about drawing Liverpool. At least that’s what Roberto Firmino thinks, with the Brazilian striker believing this Liverpool are a side that can beat anyone.
“We feel we have played well against the top English clubs [so] we are not afraid of anyone,” Firmino told the club’s official website. “We are not concerned who we get, we don’t mind. A top Spanish club? We are not afraid. I don’t think we have anything to fear.
“If you are in the draw then you cannot be afraid of anyone. We feel we can beat any side on our day. I think we are a team who will cause problems to others. We are a good team, we can play against the big Spanish teams and we feel we can be a match for them.”
Liverpool are, along with Barcelona, one of only two undefeated sides remaining. Their 28 goals scored so far are the most by any side this season, and of the four clubs that have advanced they are the only ones to have shut their opponents out over two legs.
Not only are they the tournament’s high scorers—and a side that domestically over the past ten games have been in better for than presumptive Premier League winners Manchester City—but they have looked increasingly defensively sound in 2018.
“I would like to have scored, yes,” Firmino added about their last game, a professional draw with Porto to protect their 5-0 aggregate advantage. “But we are through, we are in the quarter-final, we have another round and we are playing well. We are confident.”