'Let's talk about six, baby!' - when Liverpool beat Tottenham Hotspur in the 2019 Champions League final

Liverpool defeated Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 in an all-English Champions League final on this day in 2019. It was the sixth time the Reds were crowned champions of Europe.

Liverpool celebrate winning the 2019 Champions League. (Image: Twitter)

Liverpool’s run to the Champions League final in 2019 felt driven by destiny. The Reds were denied a sixth title just the previous year when they lost the final to Real Madrid. However, the side felt different in 2019. For one, they had offloaded goalkeeper Loris Karius, whose horror show in the final was responsible for not one but two goals conceded. For the other, they had signed defender Virgil van Dijk and goalkeeper Alisson Becker – both of whom were among the best in their position in the world. Throw in the fact that Liverpool’s frontline featuring Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Roberto Firmino were firing on all cylinders and it was easy to see why Liverpool were considered the favourites.

They lived up to that billing too, coming away with a 2-0 win over Tottenham Hotspur. Spurs had done extremely well themselves to make it as far as they did. However, the year belonged to Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp.

The background

Both Spurs and Liverpool were made to work hard to reach the final. Liverpool beat Bayern Munich 3-1 in Munich to progress to the quarter-finals. In the last eight, they easily saw off Porto 6-1 on aggregate.

The biggest test, however, was the semi-final against Barcelona. And when the Catalans won 3-0 at the Camp Nou, the tie looked all but over.

Yet this Reds side had no quit in them. They pulled off a comeback for the ages, beating Barca 4-0 at Anfield to clinch a spot in the finals.

Spurs, on the other hand, had to fight hard not once but twice. They overcame Dortmund 4-0 on aggregate and narrowly beat City 1-0 at home.

The second leg, however, was off the walls. The match was 3-2 in City’s favour after 21 minutes. When Sergio Aguero added a fourth in the 59th minute, City fans rejoiced.

But Spurs had a superb Plan B. Manager Mauricio Pochettino threw on Fernando Llorente, and the big centre-forward served as an effective long-ball option.

Fittingly, he scored the goal that brought the tie back to 4-4 and sent Spurs through on away goals. There was to be more drama, however; Raheem Sterling scored a late goal but Aguero was adjuged offside by VAR and the goal was ruled out.

The semi-final against Ajax was also brilliantly chaotic. The Amsterdam side won 1-0 away from home in the first leg, giving themselves an excellent advantage.

They were then 2-0 up in the 35th minute in the second leg. Yet again, the introduction of Llorente threw the game into disarray. His physical presence caused the Ajax defence plenty of issues, and Spurs’ attackers took advantage.

A second half Lucas Moura hat-trick – the final goal coming deep into injury time – sent Spurs through to their maiden CL final.

Liverpool make it six

Given the drama that preceded the summit clash, the final was rather tame. Salah gave the Reds the lead when he converted a penalty in the second minute of the game.

The rest of the match went by without a goal until the 87th minute, when Divock Origi – Liverpool’s hero at Anfield against Barcelona – scored a second and put the game to bed.

Manager Jurgen Klopp was in a musical mood afterwards. “There are always a couple of people who can tell you ‘yeah, but you didn’t win’, but now….. ‘Let’s talk about six, baby, let’s talk about you and me, let’s talk about all the good things and all the bad things there may be.”

For the uninitiated, the Reds boss remixed the lyrics to the Salt-N-Pepa song “Let’s Talk About Sex”.

This win proved to be the catalyst to their dominant run in the 2019/20 Premier League season, which saw them win the domestic league for the first time in 30 years.




WRITTEN BY
Sportslumo Desk

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