It appears as though the Champions League quarter-finals against Manchester City weren’t enough to convince everyone that Liverpool are the rightful winners of the biggest show on earth this year. UEFA insisted on moving forward with their semi-final draw today despite the fact that Liverpool bested the almighty City 5-1 over two legs.
And fair is fair. Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and Roma have all had sensational Champions League campaigns and will at this stage of the competition be just as confident as Liverpool of lifting the trophy in Kiev.
The pageantry must go on. And as the shuffling commenced in Switzerland today, Bayern Munich were the first team out of the pot. A tense minute followed, waiting for the second ball to be opened. It was Real Madrid. And that left two beautiful little footballs left in the bowl. Liverpool and AS Roma. Liverpool were the first name pulled and so will play Roma in the Champions League semi-finals starting at Anfield.
It’s Roma that has looked like the best prospect for beating over two semi-final legs as their club is the least experienced in the Champions League. But this Liverpool team would not fear playing any of the other three clubs swirling around in the bowl. The attacking flair of Jürgen Klopp’s team is capable of overwhelming any club in the world right now. And the defensive acumen of the team as a whole has risen greatly since the arrival of Virgil Van Dijk.
Of course, Roma will present it’s own problems for Klopp to sort out on the training pitch but a match-up with the Italian club in the next round while avoiding the big boys has to be looked at as a major boon for Liverpool on their road to the final. Also, the univerally-beloved Mohamed Salah will be welcomed back to Rome with open arms by Roma supporters, so perhaps they’ll just sort decide to let us advance just to be super cool.