LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, April 13, 2022: Liverpool's Sadio Mané celebrates after scoring the second goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter-Final 2nd Leg game between Liverpool FC and SL Benfica at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool can seal best-ever winning record in Champions League final

As Liverpool seek their seventh European Cup as they take on Real Madrid in the Champions League final, the club’s best-ever winning record is also up for grabs.

Liverpool could record their 50th victory of the campaign tonight, their most ever in a single season.

Their previous best was 43 in 2019/20.

The Reds are three goals short of recording 150 this season.


The Fab Three

LONDON, ENGLAND - Saturday, May 14, 2022: Liverpool supporters' banner featuring Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mané and Mohamed Salah during the FA Cup Final between Chelsea FC and Liverpool FC at Wembley Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Mo Salah has scored 31 goals this season.

Only once, in his first season (44 goals in 2017/18), has he scored more in a single campaign. He also scored 31 goals last season.

In the Champions League, Salah has scored 34 times in 58 appearances for Liverpool.

Sadio Mane has 26 goals in all 57 European games for the Reds, while Roberto Firmino has netted 22 goals in 64 European games for the club.

Mane has scored in each of his last 3 European starts.


Germany’s hope

VILLARREAL, SPAIN - Tuesday, May 3, 2022: Liverpool's manager Jürgen Klopp celebrates as his side reach the Final beating Villarreal during the UEFA Champions League Semi-Final 2nd Leg game between Villarreal CF and Liverpool FC at the Estadio de la Cerámica. Liverpool won 3-2 (5-2 on aggregate).(Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

This will be Jurgen Klopp’s fourth Champions League final as a coach, the same number as Marcello Lippi and Alex Ferguson.

Only Carlo Ancelotti, with his fifth today, has appeared in more.

If Liverpool lift the trophy tonight, Germany will be the first country to produce four successive European Cup-winning managers.

Klopp has faced Real Madrid nine times during his career, winning three, losing four and drawing two – the first six being with Borussia Dortmund.



MADRID, SPAIN - SATURDAY, JUNE 1, 2019: Liverpool's players line-up for a team group photograph before the UEFA Champions League Final match between Tottenham Hotspur FC and Liverpool FC at the Estadio Metropolitano. Back row L-R: goalkeeper Alisson Becker, Roberto Firmino, Joel Matip, Fabio Henrique Tavares 'Fabinho', Virgil van Dijk, Mohamed Salah. Front row L-R: Georginio Wijnaldum, Trent Alexander-Arnold, captain Jordan Henderson, Andy Robertson, Sadio Mane. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Eight players are in line to play their third European Cup final in five seasons with Liverpool

Those are Salah, Mane, Firmino, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Jordan Henderson, James Milner, Andy Robertson and Virgil van Dijk.

Alisson is the only player to start all 12 games for the Reds in Europe this season, with Fabinho, Mane and Salah also featuring in every match.

Liverpool have used 28 different players in this season’s competition, producing 11 different scorers.


Thiago’s dodgy record!

Thiago has been on the winning side against Real once in 13 career appearances, scoring twice in total.

The victory came in the Copa del Rey while with Barcelona in 2012.


Familiar faces

CARDIFF, WALES - Friday, June 2, 2017: Real Madrid's Gareth Bale and Luka Modri? during a training session ahead of the UEFA Champions League Final between Juventus FC and Real Madrid CF at the Stadium of Wales. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Marcelo, Luka Modric, Karim Benzema, Dani Carvajal, Gareth Bale and Isco have all played in Real’s last four final wins, with Marco Asensio, Toni Kroos, Casemiro and Nacho also playing against Liverpool in 2018.

Benzema has scored four goals in five appearances against Liverpool.

Modric has won nine of 13 games against Liverpool and seven of the last nine. He has not lost in the last nine.

Kroos has won four of his five games against Liverpool, drawing the other.

Bale has played 12 times against Liverpool scoring three times, including two in the 2018 Champions League final, and Eden Hazard has scored seven times in 18 appearances against Liverpool in all games.



MADRID, SPAIN - MAY 04: Karim Benzema of Real Madrid celebrates their side's victory and progression to the UEFA Champions League Final after the UEFA Champions League Semi Final Leg Two match between Real Madrid and Manchester City at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu on May 04, 2022 in Madrid, Spain. (UEFA)

Benzema is the Champions League’s leading scorer this season with 15 goals, two more than Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski.

The tally includes an 18-minute hat-trick against PsG in the round of 16, and he scored three times in 26 minutes at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea in the quarter-finals.

In doing so he became only the fourth player in the Champions League era to score a hat-trick in back-to-back games.

Benzema has scored 16 goals against English opponents in just 22 appearances – the highest number he has scored against a single nation.

He has 87 goals in 144 European club games in his career, all but one of those coming in this competition.

In all games this season, Benzema has missed four of his 13 penalties – including twice in the same game at Osasuna last month.

He has scored 44 goals in his 45 games this season, averaging a goal every 87 minutes.


Ancelotti’s Liverpool connection

MADRID, SPAIN - Tuesday, November 4, 2014: Real Madrid's head coach Carlo Ancelotti during the UEFA Champions League Group B match against Liverpool at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Should Real win this game, Ancelotti will become the first coach ever to win the European Cup four times, having previously done so in 2003, 2007, and 2014.

Ancelotti has managed against Liverpool 16 times in his career, winning eight and losing five.

His teams have conceded only 12 times in total. His last game saw Everton win 2-0 at an empty Anfield during the Covid-afflicted season of 2020/21.

His last cup tie against Liverpool saw his Everton team lose 1-0 to a youthful Reds lineup in the FA Cup in January 2020, with Curtis Jones scoring his first goal for the club.


Tonight’s referee

PARIS, FRANCE - MAY 27: (L-R) Match officials Cyril Gringore, Clement Turpin and Nicolas Danos pose for a photo during the Referee Team Training Session at Stade de France on May 27, 2022 in Paris, France. Liverpool FC will face Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League final on May 28, 2022. (Photo by Alexander Hassenstein - UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images) (Photo by UEFA)

Clement Turpin (FRA) was the fourth official in the 2018 Champions League final between the two clubs.

He was in charge of last season’s Europa League final between Villarreal and Man United, which the Spaniards won on penalties.

He has refereed Liverpool third times – they have won two and drawn the other, the last match being the ‘home’ leg of the tie with RB Leipzig in last season’s round of 16, played in Budapest.

He was in charge of Real’s 3-1 win at Chelsea in this season’s quarter-final.


This season’s scorers

VILLARREAL, SPAIN - Tuesday, May 3, 2022: Liverpool's Sadio Mané celebrates after scoring his side's third goal to make the score 2-3 (2-5 on aggregate) during the UEFA Champions League Semi-Final 2nd Leg game between Villarreal CF and Liverpool FC at the Estadio de la Cerámica. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Liverpool: Salah 31, Mane 23, Jota 21, Firmino 11, Minamino 10, Fabinho 8, Diaz 6, Origi 6, Keita 4, Henderson 3, Konate 3, Matip 3, Oxlade-Chamberlain 3, Van Dijk 3, Robertson 3, Alexander-Arnold 2, Thiago 2, own goals 2, Elliott 1, Gordon 1, Jones 1

Real Madrid: Benzema 44, Vinicius Jr. 21, Asensio 12, Rodrygo 9, Alaba 3, Kroos 3, Vazquez 3, Modric 3, Nacho 3, Camavinga 2, Militao 2, Isco 2, Mendy 2, own goals 2, Bale 1, Carvajal 1, Casemiro 1, Diaz 1, Hazard 1, Jovic 1, Valverde 1

* Stats courtesy of LFC statistician Ged Rea (@ged0407).