Ranking Jurgen Klopp’s 18 European games in charge of Liverpool at Anfield

Quick Reads

Liverpool have maintained their wonderful European home record since Jurgen Klopp took charge, producing some of their best ever performances in the competition under the German.

Still unbeaten, Klopp has won 13 of 18 European encounters at Anfield and has a knack for making the Reds turn up when they really need it.

And we’ve ranked each of those 18 performances under the German on Merseyside.

18. 1-1 Rubin Kazan, October 2015

This was just Klopp’s second game in charge of Liverpool, and the malaise which hung over the latter months of Brendan Rodgers’ reign took some time to shake off.

A well-taken free-kick from Emre Can was the only highlight of the game, as Liverpool couldn’t find a winner despite playing for an hour against 10 men.

17. 2-2 Sevilla, September 2017

Liverpool fared better against the Spanish side than they did in the 2016 Europa League final when they were beaten 3-1.

They created a number of good chances and could easily have won the game, but like the return fixture’s 3-3 draw at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan, individual defensive lapses cost them three points – a recurring theme not rectified until the arrivals of Virgil van Dijk and Alisson.

Joe Gomez’s late red card wrapped up a disappointing night.

16. 0-0 Porto, March 2018

This was the luxury of being a dead rubber, as a rare Champions League away win for Liverpool made this second-leg a formality after they won 5-0 in Porto.

Adam Lallana, Joel Matip and even Danny Ings all featured for Liverpool as Mohamed Salah, Van Dijk and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain were afforded rests.

15. 2-1 Bordeaux, November 2015

The team featured a back four of Nathaniel Clyne, Dejan Lovren, Kolo Toure and Alberto Moreno played behind the likes of Joe Allen, Lucas Leiva, Jordon Ibe and Christian Benteke.

Still, they got the job done, coming from behind with goals from James Milner and Benteke to cancel out Henri Saivet’s indirect 16-yard free-kick, which was memorably awarded after Simon Mignolet entered a fugue state and held onto the ball for 20 seconds.

14. 3-0 Maribor, November 2017

After winning 7-0 away in Slovenia, this was expected to be another walkover. But Anfield was somewhat nervy as Liverpool went into the break goalless, failing to score from 13 shots in the first half.

Eventually, goals from Salah, Can and Daniel Sturridge moved Liverpool to the top the group after four games. Milner saw a penalty saved, which was the fourth spot-kick in a row that Liverpool failed to convert.

An early hint of what they’d do to Porto, City and Roma in the knockouts.

13. 4-0 Red Star Belgrade, October 2018

Despite a record-breaking domestic start to the 2018-19 campaign, Liverpool had rarely produced the barnstorming performances of the previous campaign when Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane scored 10 goals each.

They looked at their best again here, though, as the trio linked up well to tear apart Red Star. Salah scored two and Firmino and Mane scored one apiece.

12. 0-0 Bayern Munich, February 2019

Coming in the first leg of their last-16 tie, this was viewed at the time as an opportunity missed for Liverpool. In fact, prior to this, of the 31 sides to have drawn the first leg of a Champions League knockout match at home 0-0, only 10 had progressed.

The Reds definitely had the better of the game at Anfield, but Manuel Neuer was only forced into action twice, leaving Bayern favourites to make it through.

But the German champions were blown away 3-1 at the Allianz Arena as Klopp’s men once again proved history means nothing.

11. 4-2 Hoffenheim, August 2017

To qualify for the Champions League proper for the first time under Klopp, Liverpool needed to navigate a preliminary round against Julian Nagelsmann’s overachieving young team.

The Reds took an impressive 2-1 result back to Anfield for the second leg, and any nerves were put to rest early on as they raced into a 3-0 lead to make it 5-1 on aggregate.

The excellent attacking football mixed with naive defensive frailties would be a sign of things to come for Liverpool in the Champions League that season.

10. 2-0 Porto, April 2019

In what was seen as a favourable draw, there might have been a few slight concerns that Liverpool only managed to win the first leg of their quarter-final 2-0 at Anfield.

Naby Keita scored the first via a deflection after just five minutes, with Roberto Firmino tapping home the second after 26, but that was as good as it got for Klopp’s men.

Still, it proved to be the start of a formality as they went to Portugal and run out 4-1 winners.

9. 7-0 Spartak Moscow, December 2017

Liverpool went into this fixture needing to avoid defeat against the Russian champions in order to qualify for the Champions League knockout stages for the first time since 2009.

As they often did that season, they came flying out of the traps to race into a 3-0 lead after 18 minutes and didn’t let up to complete the thrashing with four more in the second half.

Each of the front three scored a goal, while Philippe Coutinho scored a hat-trick in one of his final appearances in the red shirt.

8. 3-2 PSG, September 2018

Liverpool got off to the perfect start in a tough group as they inflicted Thomas Tuchel’s first defeat as PSG manager. A resurgent Sturridge put them ahead before Milner doubled their lead from the penalty spot, and they should have made it more as a Marco Verratti-less PSG took a non-existent midfield to Anfield.

They nearly paid for their profligacy as Kylian Mbappe made it 2-2 late on against the run of play. But Roberto Firmino’s excellent injury-time winner turned out to be vital in the end.

7. 1-0 Napoli, December 2018
So many of Liverpool’s cornerstone European wins in recent years have been defined by their resplendent attack, but this one was all down to Virgil van Dijk’s leadership and Alisson’s ability to make a decisive when called upon.

Were it not for Mane’s missing a couple of golden opportunities, Klopp’s men could have been out of sight but had to edge it through Salah’s well-taken first-half goal, in which he demonstrated a Messi-esque feint to throw off the otherwise faultless Kalidou Koulibaly and beat David Ospina.

Jose Callejon could have won it for Napoli, but the game will be remembered for Alisson’s injury-time stop against Arkadiusz Milik.

6. 3-0 Villarreal, May 2016

Liverpool had to turn around a 1-0 loss in Spain, but did the job with a 3-0 win in the second-leg and set up a final against Sevilla.

There was a degree of fortune as the ball deflected off Bruno Soriano to level things up early on, but they went on to put in a dominant performance, deservedly coming out on top over the two legs. Second-half goals from Sturridge and Lallana did the job.

5. 2-0 Man Utd, March 2016

Klopp hadn’t even been in the job for six months at this point but he’d done remarkably well to instill his energetic, pressing style upon Liverpool and have them put in a great performance, entirely moulded in his image, against their biggest rivals.

Sturridge had given Liverpool an early lead from the penalty spot after Memphis Depay fouled Clyne, and Firmino’s goal midway through the second half had been coming.

A 1-1 draw at Old Trafford in the second leg secured a satisfying victory.

4. 5-2 Roma, April 2018

There was every reason to fear Roma after they shocked Barcelona with a 3-0 second-leg comeback in the quarter-final with a physical, courageous performance.

However, Eusebio Di Francesco’s high-line was suicidal and Liverpool’s front three gladly took the opportunity to exploit it – Salah got the first two, Mane added the third before Firmino had Anfield delirious with the fourth and fifth.

A lapse in concentration allowed Dzeko to get an away goal, while a questionable penalty given for handball given against Milner gave Roma a glimmer of hope for the second-leg at the Stadio Olimpico, which ending 4-2 to Roma in a similarly batsh*t game – but Liverpool made it through to Kyiv final.

3. 3-0 Manchester City, April 2018

Despite being undone by Liverpool’s aggressive final third pressing in a 4-3 loss in the league in January, their first of the season, Pep Guardiola’s City were strong favourites going into this given that they’d practically wrapped up the league title, which was eventually won with a record points and goals tally.

But Liverpool carried out the same gameplan expertly, with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s goal to put Liverpool 2-0 up the best of the three.

Seeing out the game to deny City an away goal displayed a new dimension to their game, which was arguably just as impressive as what they did up front.

2. 4-3 Borussia Dortmund, April 2016

Klopp had experienced an unbelievable European comeback with Dortmund when they made the Champions League semi-finals in 2013 as two injury-time goals against Malaga sent them to the semi-finals. He got to enjoy another one, but this time it was his former club’s time to suffer on the receiving end.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang put the visitors two goals ahead inside 10 minutes, and the away goals rule meant Liverpool needed a win to progress.

They came back from 3-1 down as Mamadou Sakho equalised with 15 minutes to go, but their chance looked to have passed them by as the match went into injury time at 3-3.

When Lovren met Milner’s cross with a far-post header, Anfield exploded. Liverpool had recaptured their Anfield aura under Klopp.

1. 4-0 Barcelona, May 2019

Liverpool had played well in the first leg at the Nou Camp, but the general consensus was that a 3-0 defeat had left even Liverpool at Anfield with too much to do.

That feeling only grew when Salah and Firmino were ruled out of the return leg through injury, and few would have predicted the miracle that was to follow even when Divock Origi scored early on.

Then Gini Wijnaldum stepped off the bench and scored two in two minutes to put Barcelona on their knees. Everybody was sure the Spaniards would score at least once, but by now the only question was whether Liverpool would win it in normal or extra time.

Then Trent Alexander-Arnold took one of the quickest-thinking corner kicks in history, Barca turned their backs, Origi didn’t, and the rest is history. Liverpool had once again produced a miracle.


More Liverpool

Naby Keita’s double nutmeg proves beyond doubt he’s arrived at Liverpool

Can you name Liverpool’s top PL goalscorer for every initial?

How Liverpool’s record after 16 games compares to the last five title winners

The six stages of Joe Gomez’s rise: ‘At the age of 17 he had everything’