Jamie Carragher states prediction for Liverpool v Villarreal
Jamie Carragher believes Liverpool can reach their first Europa League final
Jamie Carragher has rated Liverpool’s chances of reaching the Europa League as 50/50 ahead of the second leg of their semi-final against Villarreal on Thursday night.
Jurgen Klopp’s lost 1-0 to the Yellow Submarine at Estadio El Madrigal last week after Adrian Lopez scored an added-time winner despite Liverpool having a superior 14 attempts on goal.
Liverpool lost to Atletico Madrid in their only ever Europa League semi-final after former Manchester United striker Diego Forlan scored an extra-time winner at Anfield.
And Carragher, who was part of Rafael Benitez’s side that lost to Los Rojiblancos in 2010, believes the first goal will be vital on Thursday night.
“I’d say it’s probably 50-50 to be honest,” Carragher told Liverpool Echo.
“I would have really fancied us if we had held on for a 0-0 over there. But now they have a lead to try to hold on to.”
Carragher continued: “The first goal at Anfield is going to be massive. People will say Liverpool need two but they just need one to take it to extra-time and possibly even penalties.
“You don’t need to take too many risks too soon. Making sure you defend well and don’t give them an away goal is crucial.”
“It’s going to be touch and go on the night but with the Anfield crowd behind them I believe Liverpool can do it,” added Carragher.
Klopp, 48, replaced Brendan Rodgers as Liverpool manager last October.
His Dortmund outfit won the Bundesliga in 2010/11, scooped a double the next campaign and lost to FC Bayern München in the 2013 Champions League final.
Klopp’s record in 12 meetings with Spanish opposition stands at W4 D3 L5. His sides have won their last four home games against Liga teams.