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Goals galore and sinking City - Liverpool´s road to the Champions League final

23 May 2018 09:07

The surprise package in this season's Champions League, Liverpool will become the latest club to try and break Real Madrid's dominance of the competition when the sides meet in Kiev on Saturday.

Madrid have won the last two tournaments and go into the final as favourites, but the Reds' attacking trio of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane have scored 29 goals between them during the tournament.

A sixth European crown is the prize for Liverpool, who last tasted continental glory in 2005, when they overcame AC Milan in a dramatic final.

Here, we take a look back at how Jurgen Klopp's side qualified for the 2017-18 decider.

 

Qualifying: Hoffenheim - 6-3 agg

After a first leg in which Liverpool rode their luck at times to secure a 2-1 away victory, the Reds set the tone for their campaign with a first-half blitz that put them on course for the group stage. Emre Can had scored twice by the 21st minute, either side of a Salah effort, before Firmino made absolutely sure of progression against his old club with Liverpool's fourth in a 4-2 Anfield triumph.

Group stage: Unbeaten table-toppers

The group campaign got off to a slow start for Klopp's men - back-to-back draws against Sevilla and Spartak Moscow left them needing a win to kick-start their bid to reach the knockout stages. That victory arrived in emphatic fashion in Maribor, where they put seven past their hosts, before prevailing 3-0 when the Slovenians visited Merseyside. Liverpool threw away a three-goal lead as they were held 3-3 in Seville in their penultimate fixture, but rounded things off with another seven-goal showing at home to Spartak, leaving them three points clear at the top of Group E.

Last 16: Porto - 5-0 agg

Liverpool carried their heavy-scoring exploits into the knockout phase, stunning Porto in a 5-0 first-leg victory in Portugal. With Philippe Coutinho having since departed for Barcelona, the remaining members of the 'Fab Four' put on a show, with Mane netting a hat-trick and Salah and Firmino also getting on the scoresheet. A goalless return leg mattered little as they breezed into the last eight and a tie with Premier League rivals Manchester City.

Quarter-finals: Manchester City - 5-1 agg

City were more than familiar with their quarter-final opponents, having seen Liverpool halt their bid for an unbeaten Premier League season in a 4-3 top-flight thriller in January. And this last-eight clash lived up to its billing as Liverpool put on a dazzling display in the home leg, as first-half goals from Salah, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Mane gave them control of a tie most had predicted would be closely contested. Gabriel Jesus' early strike in Manchester raised hope of a City comeback, but Salah and Firmino made it 2-1 on the night and, with Pep Guardiola watching on from the stands after being sent off, the Reds eased into the last four.

Semi-finals: Roma - 7-6 agg

Liverpool appeared to be on course for yet another comfortable victory as they tore Roma apart to race into a 5-0 lead on Merseyside, but late goals from Edin Dzeko and Diego Perotti gave the Serie A club a glimmer of hope. Roma had produced a miracle comeback to knock Barcelona out in the previous round and came close to doing likewise against English opposition, falling one goal short of forcing extra time as they battled to a 4-2 second-leg victory in an enthralling encounter.

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