It was one-way traffic in the second half at Anfield as Real Madrid put three goals beyond Liverpool to register an emphatic 5-2 win over the Premier League side. The Merengues needed a bit of luck to get going but did not look back once they were on track.
Thibaut Courtois did not have the most memorable of outings on the night, gifting one goal away and making just two saves in the game.
He spoke to the media after the full-time whistle and gave his views on various facets of the game. Here are the snippets from his media interaction.
The Belgian shot-stopper began his interview by remembering Amancio Amaro, Real Madrid’s honorary president, who passed away earlier in the day.
“First of all, we’d like to dedicate the victory to Amancio, we’ve lost a legend,” the Belgian said.
Courtois made one of the biggest mistakes of his Real Madrid career in the first period when he gifted Liverpool a second goal with a loose pass. The goalkeeper explained the events that led to the unfortunate goal on the night.
“I was a little unlucky, but that’s okay. It was a bit of a difficult pass from Carvajal, I controlled it well and tried to pass it, but I saw Salah stand still. It bounced on my knee and well, it’s bad luck,” he said.
Courtois then spoke about how the men in white put pressure on the hosts with their opener and reflected on Alisson making a similar error in goal at the other end.
“We knew we could hurt them and Vini’s first goal gave us breathing space. The same thing happened to Alisson and we went in at half-time level. We had some counterattacks and we know that we could cause them problems and that’s how we won the game today.”
Real Madrid are perhaps the world’s best team in knockout ties as they always find a way to channel their strengths and pull off a comeback. The shot-stopper highlighted the confidence in his team and revealed that the players did not once feel overwhelmed.
“We always have the ability to react. Looking for something good in the midst of a bad situation, maybe that goal helped us to respond. My teammates also told me not to worry. Everyone knows we have plenty to play with and plenty of goals, and that’s how it worked out.”
Courtois has played at Anfield several times before in the Premier League during his time with Chelsea. However, he maintained that Tuesday night was a special experience, saying:
“It’s always a pleasure to play here, especially in the Champions League. It’s the first time I’ve played here in the Champions League, I’ve played here in the league but it’s different.”
Despite seeing their home team lose embarrassingly, the fans at Anfield applauded Karim Bezema and Luka Modric for their spectacular display on the night. Courtois made a special mention of the same.
“There was a good atmosphere today and they know how to appreciate what Modrić and Benzema are doing and that’s why they applaud them. That’s the nice thing, they know how to appreciate good football.”
While a three-goal lead sounds invincible, the world has seen bigger comebacks in the past. With an example, the Real Madrid man explained that his side needed to stay grounded.
“Madrid are always going to fight until the end. Liverpool are not the team of last year, they are more vulnerable at the back and we saw that today. But we haven’t qualified yet and anything can happen with the new rule, it happened last year with Chelsea.”
Finally, Courtois encouraged his team to keep fighting on all fronts and insisted that Real Madrid would always be favourites, irrespective of the competition or schedule.
“We’re not going to sit back, there are some very important games coming up and we have to carry on with the pace. There are still a lot of top teams in contention, but Madrid will always be one of the favourites.”
Source: Real Madrid official website
Real Madrid may look to sell 24-year-old star if top target arrives in the summer – report
Real Madrid are leaving no stone unturned in their bid to assemble an even stronger squad for the upcoming campaign.
Kylian Mbappe and Alphonso Davies are the club’s top targets in that regard, for the two new signings will be regular starters and bonafide difference makers on the field for Los Blancos.
The latter, in particular, arrives to reinforce a position where none of Carlo Ancelotti’s current options are convincing. Fran Garcia and Ferland Mendy have both had their hiccups at the left-back position for Real Madrid, leaving the position open for Davies to take over.
A potential departure
As revealed by MARCA, Davies’ arrival next season will jeopardise Garcia’s importance in the team for the Canadian will be the manager’s first choice by a mile.
Moreover, Ancelotti is said to be in favour of renewing Mendy, implying that Garcia will practically be his third choice.
Come summer, Garcia could thus be sold if the club receive an offer that they can make money off. Considering that they shelled out €5 million last summer for his incorporation, any offer north of that mark could do the job.
In 18 appearances and 11 starts in La Liga this season, the 24-year-old has provided four assists for Los Blancos. Interestingly, he has started just one of Real Madrid’s last six games across all competitions.
As revealed earlier this week, Real Madrid have reached a verbal agreement with Alphonso Davies. An agreement with Bayern Munich over a transfer fee could be a difficult proposition, however.
As such, it is unclear if Los Blancos will make the move for Davies this summer at a subsidised fee or wait until next year when the player will be a free agent.
Garcia’s future, needless to say, depends on their plan of action on the Davies front.