Liverpool shocked the world in 2005. The Reds lifted their fifth European Cup in incredible circumstances, coming back from three goals down to beat AC Milan on penalties. The win put Liverpool in the Club World Cup. The Reds eventually fell short after losing 1-0 to Sao Paulo of Brazil. Rafa Benitez’s side had an astonishing three goals disallowed during the game.
This winter Liverpool return to the Club World Cup, playing their first matches in the competition in 14 years when they visit Qatar in December.
The Reds will be looking to right the wrongs of the past and they are in an excellent position to do so. In the 2005 final Liverpool went 1-0 down after 26 minutes. On the hour mark Luis Garcia saw his headed goal ruled out for offside. Hot on the heels of Garcia’s disappointment, Sami Hyypia had a goal disallowed when Xabi Alonso’s corner was adjudged to have gone out before reaching the Finnish defender. Just minutes from time, Florent Sinama Pongolle had an equaliser chalked off as Luis Garcia was once again flagged for offside.
Having been so unlucky to lose the final last time out, the Reds have unfinished business. Jürgen Klopp’s men will go into the tournament as strong favourites; the Premier League leaders have made mincemeat of every European side they have faced in the last year.
If Liverpool win the Club World Cup it would serve as further confirmation of the Reds’ supremacy at the minute. There doesn’t appear to be a team on the planet that have what it takes to beat Klopp’s side.
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However, the lads from Anfield will have to contend with the problem of the League Cup. The Reds have promised to field a side similar to that that has appeared in the competition thus far and will be forced to split the squad into two in order to fulfil their obligations to both competitions.