Liverpool v Real Madrid
English Premier League runners-up, Liverpool, will face Spanish champions, Real Madrid, in the 2022 Champions League final at the Stade de France in Paris on Saturday evening. Both of these European giants have a rich history in this competition, and they will be eager to add to their trophy haul.
Both clubs have been very successful in the Champions League?
Real Madrid are the most successful club in the history of the Champions League, which was previously known as the European Cup. Los Blanco’s won their first European Cup in 1956 and went on to dominate the competition winning it every year between 1956-1960.
They also won it on four successive occasions between 2014-2018, which is the last time Madrid lifted the trophy. That took their tally of European Cup/Champions League wins to 13. They have also been runners-up on three occasions.
Liverpool are the most successful British club in the Champions League with six trophy wins to their name. The Reds first won the competition when it was the European Cup in 1977 and defended their title the following year in 1978.
This will be Liverpool’s first appearance in the final since 2019 when they beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-0.
How the finalists reached Paris
After qualifying from the group stages, Liverpool have had a tough route to the final in the knockout stages. The Reds got through a difficult two-legged tie against Inter Milan but were helped by an excellent performance that saw them win 2-0 in the San Siro.
Jurgen Klopp’s men then faced Benfica and won again away from home, securing a 3-1 win before a 3-3 draw back at Anfield. In the semi-finals, they beat Villareal 5-2 on aggregate to breeze through to the Paris final.
Real Madrid have certainly had the more gruelling route in the knockout stages to reach their seventeenth Champions League/European Cup final. The Spanish side looked to be heading out when they found themselves 2-0 down on aggregate against PSG, before an incredible late Karim Benzema hattrick turned the tie on its head.
Los Blanco’s then faced the reigning European champions, Chelsea, and got through in fine style 5-4 on aggregate but had to rely on a late goal before winning the tie in extra-time. In their semi-final, Madrid again looked to be heading out to Manchester City, but late goals again saw the tie go to extra time before Carlo Ancelotti’s men won to reach Paris.
Final stat attack
Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti will be aiming to win a record fourth Champions League title as a manager, whilst Liverpool will be going for a treble of cup successes this season.
Having beaten two English clubs, Chelsea, and Manchester City, in previous rounds after trailing at some point in each tie, Madrid won’t fear Liverpool as they haven’t lost to them since 2009, winning four times and drawing once.
The last two staging’s of the Champions League final at the Stade de France have seen Spanish winners on both occasions, namely Madrid in 2000, and Barcelona in 2006.
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