Rewinding back to August of 2017, the odds of Liverpool winning the Champions League were as big as 40/1. Nobody believed this side would reach a final, let alone be crowned champions of Europe. Ask even the most optimistic of supporters and many would probably be happy with reaching the quarter-finals of the competition. Honestly, who would’ve imagined a team with a teenage right back, a Championship left back and a “Chelsea reject” going all the way? Coutinho’s departure mid-season cast further doubt at the probability of us going deep in the competition.
As the season progressed and the results going in our favour, many continue to doubt us. Throwing away a 3-goal lead to Sevilla in the group stages provided plenty of ammunition for the dissenters. Many written us off when we drew Manchester City in the quarter-finals. Yet one by one we vanquished our foes and marched on. Maribor? Mauled 7-0. Spartak Moscow? Barely escaped Anfield with their lives. Porto? Completely humiliated at their own ground. Manchester City? Effectively lost the game in the 1st leg. And finally Roma, who despite putting up a spirited fight were duly dispatched.
Now here we are, at the brink of winning a 6th European Cup. In fact, they’re now placed as low as 2/1 to lift the Champions League trophy. It just highlights what an incredible journey the team had gone through. Nobody rated this team yet somehow, they’re European finalists. All this is down to one person, and his name is Jurgen Klopp.
Remember, this isn’t even Klopp’s completed project. Keita is yet to arrive, and we are in serious need of midfield depth. Add in the fact that Lovren is no first choice centre back just shows how much of an accomplishment it is to be a European finalist. Without his desired personnel, Klopp somehow managed to reach 3 finals in his short reign so far. The man himself has acknowledged what an achievement it was to reach the finals. He said: “In not even three years we are now in a third final, that’s not bad. Of course we are here to win things but the only way to win things is to go to the final. If you don’t go there, there’s no chance. We are there and it’s just amazing.”
Klopp’s ability to get the best out of what he has at his current disposal all comes down to a few factors: his brilliant man-management and tactics, as well as his amazing relationship with the fans. What he’s doing now is nothing short of a miracle. If he could achieve so much with this team, imagine what happens when the missing jigsaw pieces are fitted in. Just think about it.
“We have to change from doubters from believers. Now.” Those were Klopp’s exact words for the Anfield faithful when he first arrived. Fast forward 3 years and the whole Anfield camp believes. Even though 12-time winners Real Madrid stands in the way of us laying our hands on the coveted price, belief is still sky-high. This team has shown that anything is possible, so why not a 6th European Cup?
Come 26th May and Kiev will be painted Red. The Kopites will drive their beloved team on as the men in Red will try to overcome the men in White. Will Liverpool’s fairy tale run have a happy ending is anyone’s guess, but take nothing away from their incredible journey. The lads have worked hard and they rightfully deserve their place in the finals.
Nothing is impossible so we’ll believe. Make us dream Reds.