Salah seeks Real Madrid revenge in Champions League final

Salah seeks real Madrid revenge in Champions League final

Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah is looking forward to face Real Madrid in the Champions League final as the Egyptian forward targets revenge for his team’s 2018 defeat by the Spanish side.

Liverpool held off a stirring comeback from Villarreal to reach the final as second-half goals from Fabinho, Luis Diaz and Sadio Mane secured a 5-2 aggregate victory.

It will be recalled that Salah left the field in tears following a heavy fall under a challenge by Sergio Ramos in Liverpool’s 3-1 defeat by Real in the final of Europe’s elite club competition four years ago.

On Tuesday, Liverpool secured a 5-2 win on aggregate against Villarreal in their semifinal and will discover who they play in the May 28 final later on Wednesday as City face Real.

“I want to play Madrid,” Salah told BT Sport. “City is a really tough team, we’ve played against them a few times this season. If you ask me personally, I’d prefer Madrid.

Asked if he wanted revenge against the Spanish side, Salah said: “We lost in the final against them, so I want to play against them and hopefully win it from them as well.”

Liverpool found themselves 2-0 down at Villarreal but three goals in a 12-minute spell after the break helped them advance to their third Champions League final in five seasons.

Salah hailed the character of Liverpool, who are chasing an unprecedented quadruple of trophies this season.

“It was tough in the first half but then we went to the dressing room, the gaffer (Jurgen Klopp) started talking and we talked to each other as well,” Salah said.

“That character and personality in the dressing room shows that we are a top team, so that’s why we can strike back after losing 2-0 in the first half playing away.”

Liverpool’s progress keeps them on course to become the first English side to complete the quadruple.

They already have the Carabao Cup in the trophy cabinet after beating Chelsea on penalties in February and Thomas Tuchel’s side are again the opposition at Wembley for the FA Cup final on 14 May.

This victory means Liverpool have become the first English club to reach the final of the European Cup/Champions League, FA Cup and League Cup in the same season.

Liverpool are also only one point behind Manchester City in the Premier League title race and could meet in the Champions League final later this month.

Pep Guardiola’s side hold the advantage in the second semi-final after an incredible first leg at Etihad Stadium saw them beat Real 4-3 in one of the best games in the tournament’s history.

The second leg takes place at Real’s Santiago Bernabeu stadium on Wednesday and if the Spanish champions, managed by ex-Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti, can turn the one-goal deficit around it would set up a repeat of the 2018 final.