Liverpool face Atletico Madrid test as they travel to the Wanda Metropolitano

  • Liverpool have never defeated Atletico Madrid in the pair’s 4 Champions League encounters (D2, L2)
  • The pair’s last two meetings went in favour of los Rojiblancos who won 1-0 and 3-2 (a.e.t) in the 2019-20 Champions League Round of 16
  • Atletico Madrid have not won their last 4 Champions League games at home (D3, L1) – their longest winless streak at home in the competition since 2009 (also a run of 4 games without a win)
  • Liverpool have struggled on Spanish soil in European competitions, losing 6 of their last 7 (D1) games
  • Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool are undefeated in away games in the Champions League group stage since 2019 when they succumbed 0-2 to Napoli at the Stadio San Paolo

In what is the most high-profile UEFA Champions League clash of the week, Atletico Madrid are set to host Liverpool at the Wanda Metropolitano. Los Rojiblancos emphatically ended Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool’s bid to regain the Champions League title in 2020 as Diego Simeone masterminded a 4-2 aggregate win over the Reds, the last time the pair met each other in Europe’s biggest club competition

Football match

Liverpool’s struggles against Atletico Madrid and in Spain

The Reds have never defeated Atletico Madrid in the Champions League. The 4 meetings between the sides have resulted in 2 draws and 2 wins for the Spanish club. Interestingly, Liverpool shares a similar record against FC Basel.

Liverpool also have a chequered history while playing on Spanish soil in European competitions. The six-time European champions have lost 6 of their last 7 European games on Spanish soil (and against Spanish opponents). Funnily enough, Liverpool’s coronation as 2018-19 Champions League winners (after a 2-0 win over Tottenham) came in Spain at the Wanda Metropolitano – the site of the showdown on Tuesday.

On the flip side, Atletico Madrid’s home form in the Champions League has been far from ideal. Diego Simeone’s men are winless in their last 4 Champions League fixtures at home (D3, L1). This is their joint-longest winless streak at home in Europe’s premier club competition; the last instance being in 2009. Goalscoring has been an issue as the reigning La Liga champions have only scored once in this stretch – 3.4 goals less than their expected tally of 4.4.

The hosts’ indifferent form at home would be music to Klopp’s ears. Liverpool have not lost an away game in the Champions League group stage since 2019 (a run of 6 games), scoring 18 goals and conceding only 3.

Masters of late goals

Los Rojiblancos have a habit of scoring late into the game, in the Champions League. 4 of their last 7 goals in the competition have come in the last 10 minutes of play, including each of the last 3 in a row.

The Spanish champions eked out a win against AC Milan via a late Luis Suarez penalty that was scored in the 97th minute (injury time, not extra time). That penalty was the latest winning goal in the Champions League since the 2003-04 edition (only counting regular time goals, not extra time).

Salah vs Suarez

Liverpool winger Mohamed Salah has started the 2021-22 season with a bang. The Egyptian has a purple patch in front of goal, scoring in 8 games running (9 goals) across all club competitions. The former AS Roma winger has also scored in Liverpool’s first 2 games of the 2021-22 Champions League (scored 1 against Milan and 2 against FC Porto).

His stretch of scoring in 5 consecutive away games in the Champions League is the most by a Liverpool player in the tournament’s history. The only player to have a better away scoring stretch for an English Club – Sergio Aguero, who scored in seven consecutive games for Manchester City between 2017 and 2019.

Atletico Madrid’s primary goal scoring threat will be Luis Suarez, whose 21 goals in La Liga helped Simeone capture his second league title as Atletico Madrid coach.

Suarez scored 82 goals in 133 games for Liverpool between 2011 and 2014 but never appeared for the Merseyside club in the Champions League. He did feature against Liverpool, in FC Barcelona colours, scoring once in a 3-0 win in 2019.