Liverpool will face Real Madrid in the Champions League final and it is exactly what Mohamed Salah and his team-mates wanted after the Egyptian revealed they were hoping for a Manchester City disaster.
City were just minutes away from reaching consecutive Champions League finals before Madrid produced a stunning comeback, eventually knocking out Pep Guardiola's side 6-5 on aggregate after extra-time. And the news was very well received in the Liverpool camp, as Salah revealed to Sky Sports that they wanted to face Madrid in Paris.
"If you ask everybody [at Liverpool], everyone wanted that game," Salah told Sky Sports. "I don't know why we're not allowed to talk about it but I'm ok to talk about it – I wanted that game! I wanted to play Real Madrid before that game [against Manchester City].
"Of course, I'm not giving too much credit to them. They're an unbelievable team with a great coach, great players. When they asked me who I wanted, I said Madrid. It's an easy answer."
Liverpool lost to Madrid in the 2017-18 Champions League final in Kyiv, and Salah left the field in tears with a shoulder injury. An infamous sequence of blunders from goalkeeper Loris Karius rounded off a heart-breaking defeat, and Salah is out to seek revenge.
"You just feel so disappointed, so down," Salah said when looking back at the defeat to Madrid. "I had work affairs and then I had a holiday after. In that holiday I just asked – what do you want? To keep crying about it and be sad about it and it takes you down? Or you just fight back. And I fought back in the best way and that's why we're here now.
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"I lost last time because I scored 40 goals but we didn't win any trophies. This time, my number is really high and we've already won one cup. If we win the next two, it's going to be exciting who is going to win it.
"In the meantime, we have to focus on the main things which is the trophy for the team, then the rest will follow. This is my best season for me at Liverpool. The goal and assist numbers are high and the way I created chances, the highest number in the Premier League, everything around the game has changed a lot.
"I don't feel that good when the team loses games, or when I don't score or make a difference. But when the team wins and I don't score, I'm still very happy. I just try to find the small things to fire me up. I try to look at a small record there, or another record there to keep my mind busy. I try to be driven with these records to break them, I try to be hungry for something new."
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