What a night for European football!
The stage was set. FC Barcelona was 3-0 up from the first leg of the UEFA Champions League semis, thrashing a formidable Liverpool. Liverpool was to miss out on key players the likes of Mohammad Salah and Roberto Firmino in the 2nd leg of the tie against an in-form Messi and Barcelona at Anfield.
To say that Liverpool faced a steep uphill battle was an understatement. Liverpool needed to score a minimum of 4 goals. Where just one goal from Barcelona would see them almost surely through to the UCL finals. Liverpool made one of the greatest comebacks in Champions League till date winning 4-0 at Anfield.
Overcoming the favorites in the tournament
Liverpool scored two goals each from Divok Origi and substitute Georginio Wijnaldum. And a solid performance from the Liverpool midfield and backline organized by Virgil Van Dijk has seen them through to back to back Champions League finals.
Barcelona was the favorites for this seasons Champion’s league title. And with Messi having one of his best seasons, it seemed like a matter of time before Barcelona would score in the first half at Anfield to launch them into their first Champions League Final since the 2014-15 season.
The Anfield factor
Leading up to the 2nd leg, Liverpool were on the back foot owing to two of their key forwards; Mo Salah and Firmino. Both being ruled out due to injuries. Some of the pressure was released when Origi had them one goal up in the first ten minutes of the game.
By the end of the first half, Liverpool had lost their left-back Andy Robertson, through another injury. The second half of the game had seen Anfield coming back to life as the crowd chants and cheers erupted with Gini Wijnaldum coming on for the injured Robertson to score two quick goals in succession. Origi scored his second through a cheeky corner to make it 4-0 on the night and 4-3 on aggregate which eventually sealed their way to the finals yet again.
The scenes at Anfield by the end were absolutely incredible. Liverpool won their semi-finals tie and are now touted to be the favorites for the Champions League trophy.