Xabi Alonso admits Liverpool's lack of Champions League experience could be key factor against Real Madrid

David Cooper 21/05/2018
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Xabi Alonso admits a lack of experience could lead to Liverpool’s downfall in the Champions League final against European masters Real Madrid.

Zinedine Zidane’s men will head to Kiev confident of making history on Saturday as they look to become the first side to win the Champions League three times in a row.

The Reds of course have a storied history in Europe too, but this squad was not around for their previous successes as the club last won the competition in 2005 and have not reached the final since 2007.

Liverpool have been fearless so far, beating Premier League champions Manchester City on the way to Ukraine, and Alonso believes they can win – but only if they control their nerves.

“They have to prepare for the game very well because Real Madrid have all the experience,” the former Liverpool and Los Blancos midfielder told AFP.

“For all the Liverpool players it will be their first Champions League final. They have to deal with this emotional side which is almost as important as the football side.

“If they can get the right balance between the excitement and the motivation, that will be the right way to approach this final.”

Liverpool’s attack is the envy of Europe as Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane and newest superstar Mohamed Salah have combined to score 29 goals in the Champions League this season.

“Whenever they have space, Real need to control them,” Alonso added. “They are able to attack through the middle of the pitch, they can connect with short passes very well, they combine very well.

“They are definitely one of the biggest strengths of Liverpool at the moment.”

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'Liverpool have to win as many Champions Leagues as Real Madrid', says Johnston

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Liverpool take on Real Madrid in the Champions League final in Kiev on Saturday.

Former Reds midfielder Craig Johnston believes the Merseyside outfit are on course and must keep their best players next season.

He believes Liverpool should then be matching Madrid in terms of Champions League titles.

Watch the video below.

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Relive Liverpool's incredible journey to face Real Madrid in the Champions League final

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Liverpool take on Real Madrid in the Champions League final in Kiev on Saturday.

It’s been an entertaining journey to the showpiece event for Jurgen Klopp’s side who have scored plenty of goals in the process.

Here’s a look back at how they made it through, including that crazy 7-6 aggregate win over Roma in the semi-finals.

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