Rio Ferdinand didnt like what he saw in Liverpools Champions League final preparations
Ex-Liverpool and Real star McManaman makes Champions League final predicition
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Rio Ferdinand has hit out at Liverpool’s pre-match preparations ahead of Saturday night’s Champions League final against Real Madrid. The Reds are bidding to cap a remarkable season by landing their seventh European Cup in Paris.
Despite coming up short in the Premier League title race, Jurgen Klopp’s side are still on course for a treble if they can overcome Los Blancos. However, Ferdinand stressed that he ‘didn’t like’ what he saw from Liverpool during their pre-match preparations.
Speaking before the big match, Ferdinand told BT Sport: “”I didn’t like that. When I was a player we had like fast, intense eight a sides a day before a game. If we didn’t I would feel abnormal. These guys are conditioned a certain way. You have to remember how many games these guys have played so many games this season, every game this season, they’ve played, so you can understand the relaxed edge to training.”
But former Liverpool favourite Steven Gerrard disagreed with Ferdinand. He insisted: “What I will say is that there were tons of media here as well. I am sure Jurgen had all his preparations done before they left and set off for Paris.
“I’ve also heard that they trained this morning as well, so they’ve probably gone over set pieces and the final small details. I think it’s very hard, you come here, tons of cameras, tons of people, they won’t want to give anything away so I think it was all done before they come.”
Liverpool and Real Madrid also locked horns in the 2018 final; a match where Liverpool were undone by a pair of goalkeeping clangers from Loris Karius. Real ran out 3-1 winners, with a brace from Karim Benzema, either side of a stupendous overhead kick from Gareth Bale, was enough to secure another European crown for the Spanish giants.
All eyes are on the Reds as they plot their revenge in Paris – but it’s not just their pre-match preparations that have come under scrutiny in the French capital ahead of the match.
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A new playing surface was laid at the Stade de France stadium ahead of the match – but the mammoth task was only completed at 1am on Thursday. Understandably, that has raised concerns; something that Klopp alluded to in his pre-match press conference.
Speaking about the pitch, Klopp said: “Usually when I say the pitch looks new, that is good news. This pitch is new since yesterday, which is not the best news. But it will be the same for both teams. I saw the refs and the good news is the ball drops normally. That someone thought it was a good idea to bring the pitch the day before to the stadium is interesting.”
He added: “Both teams are technical and you would wish in a dream world that the pitch is the best you ever saw. That’s obviously not the case. You will hear the same from Carlo Ancelotti. Definitely, if you win you don’t care about the pitch — that is easy to say. I don’t know how bad or good it is, I only just saw it. Maybe it’s perfect but it looks not perfect.”
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