ISTANBUL – Liverpool coach Jürgen Klopp said on Tuesday that he is counting on Reds supporters to make plenty of noise for the UEFA Super Cup clash with Chelsea.
The Champions League winners will face the Blues, who took the 2018-2019 Europa League title, on Wednesday in this Turkish metropolis.
“It’s brilliant. We welcome them (fans) from all over the world. Seeing what CL win meant to them was a special moment. We need help tomorrow against Chelsea as they are strong – anybody who wants to help is invited!” Klopp told a press conference at Istanbul’s Besiktas stadium.
The German rejected talk of Liverpool as the favorite.
“I didn’t know that everybody expects us to win,” he said. “We respect Chelsea a lot, saw the game against Manchester United and if you saw the game without the result you would have no idea how the game was because the game was really a very good game.”
The Blues opened their Premier League campaign on Sunday with a 4-0 loss to United at Old Trafford.
Klopp was full of praise for opposing coach Frank Lampard, one of the greatest players in Chelsea’s history, who took charge at Stamford Bridge over the summer.
“Frank did an outstanding job at Derby last year, changed the football there,” the Liverpool manager said of Lampard’s stint last season with English second-division side Derby County.
“Now he is at Chelsea, his club, everything is fresh, everybody is ready and on their toes. They will be 100 percent ready and we have to make sure we are ready too,” Klopp said.
The coach also invoked what Reds fans know as the “Miracle of Istanbul,” the 2005 Champions League final here between Liverpool and AC Milan.
Trailing 3-0 after the first half, Liverpool pulled level and ultimately won the match on penalties.
“I know about the special importance of Istanbul and how what a special place it is for every Liverpool supporter. It was 2005 in Istanbul and no one will ever forget that, which is good,” Klopp said before alluding to his memory of a match in the Turkish city.
“Istanbul is always a good place for football. I played here once with Dortmund against Galatasaray, and the atmosphere was brilliant until we calmed it down with the result,” he said.
Whatever the outcome, Wednesday’s Super Cup will go down in history as the first-ever UEFA men’s match with a female referee.
Klopp applauded the decision.
“Finally, I think it is time,” he said. “I have had experience of this in Germany. I’m really happy we can be part of this historical moment. It’s a smart decision to finally have a woman referee a very, very important game.”
“I’m really sure we will try to not make the game any more difficult than it will be (for the officials). I will show my best face if possible, otherwise my mum would be angry!” Klopp said.