Jürgen Klopp had chosen the usual wardrobe for the biggest festival in European club football. He stood stylishly in a tracksuit next to the court. That turned out to be a good choice. Sweeping emotional outbursts are easier to handle. These should be on Saturday evening in Madrid. Liverpool FC with German coach Klopp won the Champions League final against Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 (1-0). A year earlier Klopp had failed with his team in the final at Real Madrid. This time it was enough for the colors in red.
Klopp would certainly have wished for a better start to the Champions League evening in Madrid. Before the Slovenian referee Damir Skomina whistled the game, there had been a minute's silence. Former Spanish footballer José Antonio Reyes was killed in a traffic accident on Saturday. His two nephews also died with him. Some players, especially Tottenham's reservist Fernando Llorente and Liverpool substitute Alberto Moreno, were in tears. Llorente and Moreno had played together with Reyes at Sevilla.
And the tears were not dried yet, as a large part of the fans roared already. There were just 23 seconds played when Tottenham's Moussa Sissoko wanted to guide his teammates with extravagant gestures in his own sixteenth. He conducted with his right arm extended and Liverpool's Sadio Mané shot straight. Referee Skomina gave away a penalty which Mohamed Salah converted.
The big cheers from Klopp did not materialize. He seemed a bit taken aback by the early goal. The impression was also made by the two teams. After the early hit, they initially offered a broken game with many ball losses. The only thing that impressed in the first 45 minutes was Liverpool's game against the ball. Tottenham made barely controlled moves, often the London fit the ball in their own penalty area because they were in midfield, the Liverpooler on his feet.
Scoring opportunities, the team of coach Mauricio Pochettino hardly earned. The Argentine coach was noted. While Klopp was quietly pursuing the game by his standards, Pochettino sometimes lost his composure. He paced up and down the coaching zone, arguing with the referee about a supposed activity that was by no means the best one, et cetera. The man was visibly dissatisfied with his team. Liverpool, on the other hand, at least occasionally managed to become dangerous. Trent Alexander-Arnold shot narrowly past the goal after 17 minutes. 20 minutes later it was Robertson, whose attempt Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris could steer over the crossbar. Otherwise, however, the pairing offered little handsome.
The precision is missing
The hope, at least for fans of the aesthetic football game, rested on the second half. Of course, the followers of Liverpool could continue the same way. That did not do it. Tottenham increased the pressure immediately after the restart. The problem was that the precision was simply missing. Tottenham's young star Dele Alli forgave with his bad passes repeatedly good attack situations.
On the other hand, Klopp noticed that the game could not continue despite the apparent weakness in the offensive game of the opponent. He changed early already. After almost an hour he brought David Origi for the disappointing Roberto Firmino. Only a little later, James Milner entered the field for Georginio Wijnaldum. And Milner was the one who missed the 2-0 in the 69th minute. After a nice combination over Mané and Salah he came from 16 meters to the end. But his shot missed the post. In the last quarter of an hour then Tottenham pressed. But either the Londoners themselves messed up or the strong Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson stood in the way before the substitute Origi einschoss after a corner to 2: 0. (Tsp)