Liverpool are Europe’s comeback kings, with a history of overcoming the odds. Facing Real Madrid down 3-1 after the first leg in the Champions League quarter finals this season feels a little bit different, though.
In the past, the Reds have always counted on the supporters to help fuel those comebacks. On Wednesday, though, they will be without them—having won just once at home in four months now without fans.
That doesn’t mean they’ve accepted defeat. Two goals down and with just one away goal puts them at a disadvantage, as does the lack of fans at Anfield, but Jürgen Klopp says his side will go all out to win.
“When you are 3-1 down it looks like you are already out, so you have not a lot to lose,” he said at his pre-match press conference. “But we will go for it. We have to win the game. Just that, then we will see.”
If they do, it will be the second time they’ve won at Anfield since beating Spurs on December 16th of 2020 with some fans allowed to attend. Their only other victory was this past Saturday against Aston Villa.
In between, they played eight league games, recording two draws and six losses—along with a detour to Budapest, where they played their designated home game in the Round of 16 against Leipzig and won.
If they can at least win on Wednesday, it will be a clear positive. They will need to shut out Madrid and beat them by two or beat them by three if Madrid score to advance, though, and that’s a difficult task.
“A clean sheet is important, but it’s not too different from any other game,” Klopp added. “You can’t ignore defending or you get punished and I’ve no idea if any team can deny Real having any chances.
“Now we have to work and bring ourselves to a better mood so that we can start believing again. If we can see that it’s possible then we will maybe have a chance, but it will be very difficult.”