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CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Klopp warns: Inter Milan "are not coming to Anfield as tourists"

Liverpool boss Jürgen Klopp thinks 2-0 is a dangerous scoreline - one which has been overturned perhaps the most times in European ties.

Update:
Klopp warns: Inter Milan "are not coming to Anfield as tourists"
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Jürgen Klopp is more than aware of the threat posed to Liverpool by Inter Milan ahead of Tuesday's Champions League Last 16 second leg, but he has been boosted by positive injury news.

A 2-0 advantage means little in European football

The Reds head into the second leg at Anfield 2-0 up thanks to a commendable win in San Siro last month, even if the scoreline flattered them. Klopp suggested the two-goal advantage is somewhat precarious, however, claiming it to be the most overturned scoreline in football. But only once in Champions League history has a team ever lost the first leg of a knockout tie by two or more goals at home and still gone on to progress, with Manchester United doing so against Paris Saint-Germain at this stage three years ago.

That is the only such example in 41 previous instances of the scenario, meaning that, despite Klopp's concerns, Liverpool remain in a very strong position. Klopp is not risking complacency, though, reminding his team that Inter will not be on Merseyside as "tourists".

Asked what he feels the main danger is ahead of Tuesday's second leg, Klopp told reporters: "It's a danger everyone knows about: it's a lead that gets turned over the most in the history of football I think. You can't have a team at half-time that thinks they are already through. Then you are on the wrong path. It's a much better result than we expected if I'm honest. The game didn't look like we would win it 2-0 for most of it. It is a tough tie and was a really difficult game. We knew they had quality but now we know they have real quality. They will show up here after winning their last game 5-0. Yes, against bottom of the table, but still really impressive. [Lautaro] Martínez scored [a hat-trick], [Edin] Dzeko scored, [Robin] Gosens is back.

Inter, not coming over as sightseers - Klopp

"I'm really happy [Nicolo] Barella isn't playing because he set up three or four chances. That's a really good, experienced team who don't come here as tourists," he continued. "They want to chase the game and that's what we want to do, we're not a team that defends results. We want to attack the game, so let's see what we can do."

Liverpool's cause should be aided by the likely returns of at least two important players, with Thiago Alcântara and Joel Matip back in contention following brief absences through injury.

"All trained yesterday, fully," Klopp said of them and Roberto Firmino. "Not sure what we make of that yet exactly to be honest, we have to see how they react. Thiago was only a week out so should be fine but I have to wait for it. Joel was only three or four days so is fine. Bobby was a bit longer, [Sunday was his] first session so we will see. It might make sense to give him a few more days as we don't train fully today as it's MD-1, and so he might need more intense work."

Despite Klopp's apparent concerns about the scoreline, the omens are good for Liverpool. They have kept more home clean sheets in the competition since the start of 2017-18 than any other team (15 in 24) – that is 63 per cent, the best proportion of shutouts of all clubs to play at least 10 home games in the Champions League in that period.

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