Sunday 22 July 2018

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp relishing 'threat' posed by Fab Four in Champions League last 16

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp

Mark Critchley

Jürgen Klopp is relishing the chance to unleash Liverpool's 'Fab Four' on the Champions League knockout phase after their 7-0 thrashing of Spartak Moscow.

A Philippe Coutinho hat-trick, Sadio Mané brace and a goal each for Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah secured Liverpool's first place in the round of 16 for eight years on a night when only a point was required for qualification.

Liverpool's total of 23 goals in this season's group stage was only bettered by Paris Saint-Germain's 25 and still surpassed the previous record of 21, set by Borussia Dortmund last year.

Klopp's side topped Group E but could still potentially face one of Real Madrid, Juventus or Bayern Munich, who all finished as runners-up in their respective groups.

Yet despite the intimidating set of potential opponents, Klopp agrees that Liverpool's free-scoring 'Fab Four' will give them a chance against any last-16 opponent.

“If we perform like this tonight, if we are that clinical, then yes,” the Liverpool manager said when asked whether his forward line gives his side a 'fear factor'.

“But we had the same players already and they didn't score, and then it is not that we talk like this,” he added. “It's not a criticism of the past. If we perform like this then it is obviously a threat, 100 per cent.”

While praising the efforts of Coutinho, Salah, Mané and Firmino, Klopp was also keen to highlight Liverpool's strength in depth up front.

“If you see how Dom Solanke performed in Stoke, how Daniel Sturridge performed when he came on, he could have scored two or three, he made a goal for Sadio, that’s good.”

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