Jurgen Klopp reveals Thiago ‘looks good’ for the Champions League final as he discusses Sadio Mane’s future and the Paris pitch | football news

Jurgen Klopp has confirmed it “looks good” for Thiago and Fabinho to be fit enough to play for Liverpool in Saturday’s Champions League final against Real Madrid.

The midfield duo were doubtful about an injury but at his pre-match press conference on Friday ahead of the game in Paris, the Liverpool manager suggested they would be available.

“Things are looking good for Thiago and Fabinho,” said Klopp. “Fabinho trained yesterday and Thiago will train later today. The mood is good, very good. I’m really happy to be here now and to get a feel for a stadium, a place and all that.”

The Paris pitch could become a problem

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says he has no concerns about the condition of the Stade de France pitch

An unexpected concern for Liverpool could be the condition of the pitch at the Stade de France, which is not looking the best anymore having just been freshly laid this week.

“Usually when I say the pitch looks new, it’s good news,” he said. “This pitch is new since yesterday, that’s not the best news. But it is [the same] for both teams.

“We’re going to have a normal session as planned, this is our moment of the season. I saw the referees at their session and the ball is falling normally. You can see the lines where they put the pitch in and it’s not normal .”

“Someone thought it would be a good idea to bring the court the day before, that’s interesting! It didn’t spoil my mood for a second. We would have played on a petanque court. If both sides agree, I would do it.” i’m fine with it

“I hope nobody makes a story about Klopp moaning about a pitch, not me. It could just be different.”

Liverpool players show no signs of concern

Sky Sports’ Nick Wright at the Stade de France:

If Liverpool’s players really worry the pitch, they hid it well during their open training session at the Stade de France on Friday night.

Klopp’s side looked relaxed as they engaged in some low-intensity drills in front of the spectators, laughing and joking with one another during shooting practice and chatting with each other and members of the coaching staff.

The grass for the surface they trained on was reportedly grown near Barcelona in Spain and shipped to France earlier this week. It looks okay at first glance, but if you look closely you can see some lines showing where it’s been laid.

It may not be ideal, but it should be remembered that this arena was only named as the venue for Saturday’s game in February after Russia were stripped of the final in Saint Petersburg.

The Stade de France was already booked for a concert by French group Indochine last Saturday, prompting a rush to install a fresh surface in time for tomorrow’s big kick-off.

Re-run of the 2018 final

Klopp is certainly hoping that this match will be very different from the previous Champions League final clash between these two clubs when two errors by goalkeeper Loris Karius resulted in a 3-1 defeat in Kyiv. Mohamed Salah was also seriously injured in this game.

“No matter what you do, you have to gain experience,” said Klopp when asked about the game. “If you do a job on day one, it’s not the best day you’ll ever have. You get little hits and things here and there, and then you have to deliver on the big stage.

“We delivered that night and circumstances hit us. We pretty much arrived on three wheels. I don’t think we even had a full bench, key players coming back from injuries.

“Mo happened, then our goalkeeper got a concussion. It wasn’t after, it was during. So it was important. You have to learn to win. Nobody tells you that. I had to learn the hard way. I did Lost a lot of all the finals in my life and luckily in the last few we were able to win.

“But now we are playing against a team that has never lost a final. So the guys have developed enormously in the last few years. The club is well positioned, everyone is connected. We know we’re part of a big club Now the lads are just the right players for this big club. We are on a good time and ready for this final.”

Mane in the shape of his life

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp says he could “don’t give a damn” about speculation about Sadio Mane moving to Bayern Munich

Another focus of Klopp’s pre-match press conference was Liverpool’s goalscorer that night in Kyiv, Sadio Mane. The Liverpool boss was answering questions from reporters in Germany about talks over the striker’s potential move to Bayern Munich.

Klopp had to deal with a star player on the verge of a move to Bayern ahead of the 2013 Champions League final – the futures of Robert Lewandowski and Mario Gotze overshadowed Borussia Dortmund’s preparations to play them at Wembley.

“It’s not the first time Bayern Munich have had rumors popping up before a big game, so no problems at all,” said Klopp. “I don’t give a damn about the rumors about Bayern Munich. Sadio is totally focused on the game and he knows how important it is for him and for us.

“Sadio is definitely in the form of this life. It’s a pleasure to watch him train and play. We ask a lot of him and football has asked a lot of him with many finals.”

After winning the Africa Cup of Nations with Senegal earlier this year, a compatriot of Mane asked if a win here would increase the player’s chances of winning the Ballon d’Or.

“If you think about how these competitions are won, I think so. You’re either Ronaldo, Messi or whoever wins the Champions League. A win definitely increases his chances,” added Klopp.

Revenge will not distract Salah

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp shares a funny moment with a German reporter

The same goes for Salah, who has even spoken of revenge after being forced off the field with a dislocated shoulder in Kyiv following a scuffle with Sergio Ramos. Could the memory of it cheer him on or distract him?

“Nobody has to worry about him and Mo taking it too much. We all lost that day, he got injured early in the game. He was in good shape then and he is now. We are all motivated by different things, we have 25 or 26 players.

“It’s not the only motivation in Mo’s case. But it’s normal that he wants to fix things. We want to fix things. If I show the video of the game tomorrow and it’s the only motivation, do it no sense.

“That’s one of the reasons, but not the only one.”

Ramos is no longer a Real Madrid player but Liverpool are set to face some familiar faces on Saturday. Karim Benzema even scored that night.

“It’s the club with the most awards, some players can win it a fifth time, the manager a fourth. We can’t have that experience overnight.” Is that why Madrid are favourites?

Could Madrid be favorites?

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Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp believes Real Madrid’s Champions League history makes them favorites for Saturday’s final

“I don’t have an easy answer. If you look at the experience and the way Real Madrid have celebrated the comebacks – which have been crazy – then I would say Real Madrid.

“I want us to think on the same level and be ourselves. When we’re at the top of our game, it’s really difficult to play against us.

“That’s my only concern at the moment, but of course the confidence of the Madrid players is incredibly high. You have to be sure about things like that.”

For that reason, don’t expect many tactical surprises from Liverpool.

“If I do something surprising for my players, they might think I’m nervous,” he explained. “I think if you do the right thing all the time, it’s right in the final – but it has to be at the highest level.

“I want us to think on the same level and be ourselves. When we’re at the top of our game, it’s really difficult to play against us.

“That’s my only concern at the moment, but of course the confidence of the Madrid players is incredibly high. You have to be sure about things like that.”

For that reason, don’t expect many tactical surprises from Liverpool.

“If I do something surprising for my players, they might think I’m nervous,” he explained. “I think if you do the right thing all the time, it’s right in the final – but it has to be at the highest level.

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