Jamie Carragher is feeling “confident” that Liverpool can win their third trophy of the season and beat Real Madrid in the Champions League final on Saturday.
Jurgen Klopp’s side are aiming to claim yet another trophy as they look to end the campaign on a high. They have already won the Carabao Cup and the FA Cup, and although they missed out on the Premier League title at Manchester City’s expense, the Reds can still come away with three trophies.
Meanwhile, Los Blancos come into the game having claimed the La Liga title with ease, finishing 13 points above second-place Barcelona. Carlo Ancelotti’s men lost just four league games on route to becoming champions and will be hoping to add their 14th Champions League trophy to their cabinet.
When delivering his prediction, Carragher told Sky Bet’s The Overlap podcast: “I’ve watched Real Madrid in the Champions League this season and they’ve lost more games in the Champions League than Liverpool have lost all season in all competitions.
“Real Madrid are a very good team but they’re not as good as Man City and I don’t think they’re as good as Chelsea – even though they beat both of them.
“You can spin it both ways with the spirit, the winning, the coming back, but they’ve carried a lot of luck in those games, which you need. If you win every game in the last minute coming from behind, if you’re that good a team you don’t get yourself in that position all the time.
“Man City should have battered them, they should have won [their semi-final first leg ] 6-2 at home – and then they’re 3-0 down at home to Chelsea.
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“Of course, Real can win – it’s a one-off game. I just think if City or Liverpool were playing Real Madrid in a one-off game, having their team and playing near their best, they’d win the game. I’m confident.”
Meanwhile, former Manchester United defender Gary Neville believes Liverpool will fall short on the weekend and admits Real’s midfield options will prove to be too much for the Reds. Ancelotti is likely to play Luka Modric, Casemiro and Toni Kroos in the final, with Federico Valverde supporting from a wider role and Eduardo Camavinga likely to come off the bench.
“I don’t think Liverpool will win the European Cup,” Neville said on The Overlap podcast. “I’ve thought a lot about [the final in] Paris and I’ve thought about Real Madrid and why they’ve won their games, why they keep coming back.
“I thought back to 1999 and how we kept coming back in games and winning late on. It was our midfield of [Roy] Keane, [Nicky] Butt, [Paul] Scholes, [Ryan] Giggs and [David] Beckham. They were absolutely phenomenal, beyond any level of what I’ve ever seen.
“I look at Real Madrid’s midfield in Casemiro, Kroos, Modric – plus the two that come in late with Valverde and Camavinga – those five players drive them right from the first minute and right to the end. And Carlo Ancelotti interferes with them until the very end.
“I think Liverpool’s midfield is their weak point and in the last 15 minutes that midfield for Real Madrid – the five of them combined – will see them win the game on Saturday.”