Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has jokingly claimed that his side will eliminate Liverpool in the round of 16 of the Champions League.
Liverpool and Real Madrid obviously have to draw each other first, but that is a possibility after the group stage wrapped up last night.
The Reds defeated Salzburg 2-0 in Austria on Tuesday night thanks to goals from Naby Keita and Mohamed Salah. The victory ensured Liverpool finished on top of Group E.
As for Real Madrid, they ended the group stage with a 3-1 away victory over Club Brugge last night. The Spanish giants finished second to Paris Saint-Germain in Group A.
With both sides finishing where they did, they could possibly face each over in the round of 16, which Zidane jokingly welcomed.
“If we play Liverpool, we will eliminate them,” Zidane told the media with a smile. “We can’t do anything about the draw.”
Jurgen Klopp’s side were defeated 3-1 by Zidane’s Real Madrid in the 2018 Champions League final in Kiev.
If Liverpool were to draw Real Madrid, it would certainly be entertaining viewing. The final in Kiev back in 2018 was a solid contest until Salah went off with a shoulder injury.
One also has to consider that Liverpool have tasted success within the competition since 2018, after defeating Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 in 2019 final.
That experience is invaluable and would no doubt put the Reds in a stronger position to defeat the Spanish giants this time around.
Before the 2018 final, it was the first season Klopp’s Liverpool qualified for the Champions League and it arguably showed on the night.
The draw for the round of 16 will take place on Monday. Liverpool will face one of Real Madrid, Atalanta, Atletico Madrid, Borussia Dortmund or Lyon.