Two former Liverpool stars fought for a place in the Champions League knockout stages
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Two former Liverpool stars fought for a place in the Champions League knockout stages

While Liverpool’s passage into the Champions League knockout stages was confirmed last week, there were a number of fixtures during the final game-week which will have been of interest to supporters.

Two former Reds who were faced against each other last night were former goalkeeping duo Pepe Reina and Simon Mignolet.

They were both in action during the 2-2 stalemate between Lazio and Club Brugge.

The result meant that it was Reina that came out on top in terms of qualification with Lazio progressing through the the last-16 as runners-up of Group F, behind leaders Borussia Dormund.

Mignolet and Club Brugge finished third in the group standings meaning they will be enrolled into the Europa League next year.

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How the goalkeepers compare

While it was Reina who ultimately came out trumps last night, it has been Mignolet who has enjoyed the more proactive 2020/21 campaign.

The Belgian shot-stopper has already clocked up 19 appearances for his club side, featuring in every game for Brugge, bar two fixtures in-which he was rested.

Mignolet, 32, left Liverpool in the summer of 2019 to return to his homeland. He and Brugge currently sit second in the Belgian first division, one point behind leaders Genk.

Reina, 38, meanwhile has had a more limited role with his club side this season. He has made just five Serie A appearances for Lazio this season, but has started all-but-one of their Champions League fixtures.

Unlike Mignolet, he at least has the chance next February and may be beyond to play a bigger role in the competition.

The veteran goalkeeper could be drawn to play against his former side Liverpool in the knockout stages.

Jurgen Klopp and his team have already been crowned winners of Group D meaning Lazio could be a potential last-16 opponent for the English champions.

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He is fondly remembered during an eight-year spell with the Reds which saw him clock up 394 appearances on Merseyside.

Reina was only playing back at Anfield seven months ago when he started in between the sticks for Aston Villa while on a temporary loan spell last season.

His teammate and goalscoring sensation, Ciro Immobile has made it clear he would prefer to avoid Liverpool as well as current holders Bayern Munich in the last-16.

“Now we wait for the draw and hope not to be drawn with prohibitive teams such as Bayern or Liverpool,” he told Sky Sports, as per Football Italia.

“We have enthusiasm, we enjoy playing. The important thing is to gain experience in this competition.”

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