Blood Red from Barcelona: Mane, the man for the big occasion, and the midfield to help stop Messi


Manage episode 232503528 series 2280002
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Excited? Nervous? Both? We're just hours away from the Champions League semi-final first leg between Barcelona and Liverpool at Camp Nou and, to get you in the mood, Ian Doyle and James Pearce have recorded their second Blood Red podcast of the week from sunny Spain. And they are joined a man whose voice will be familiar to our listeners... Neil Jones, formerly of the ECHO, but now the Liverpool FC correspondent for Goal. Ian and James kick us off by reviewing Jurgen Klopp's 'perfect' performance at the press match conference the night before, which also featured Sadio Mane. Mane, like this Liverpool team, look born to play on this stage and, at the old home of one his heroes, Ronaldinho, Mane is tipped by Neil to rise to the big occasion, The statistics back that claim up and James believe the Senegalese striker is the embodiment of the 'opportunity, not pressure' message Klopp has been putting across. So relaxed was Mane at the presser, he even entertained questions about those Real Madrid links, which are fanciful to say the least. But one player who did choose to leave Liverpool is Philippe Coutinho and both he and fellow former Red, Luis Suarez, are discussed here, which include some great anecdotes about the latter, which should leave supporters in no doubt about his motivation tonight. One player who is certainly motivated to bring the Champions League back to Barcelona is Lionel Messi, and the panel discuss the midfield needed to negate the great man's influence. With Mane, Mohamed Salah and hopefully Roberto Firmino to contend with, Barca have a lot on their plate themselves, and there are reports that they may play a more conservative right-back than Nelson Semedo. But should Liverpool do the same and bring Joe Gomez in for Trent Alexander-Arnold? The lads have their say on that before giving their score predictions. Enjoy.

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