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Merson backs Liverpool star better equipped to deal with Benzema to start, makes score prediction

Football 365

Paul Merson thinks Liverpool defender Ibrahima Konate would be “better equipped” than Joel Matip to start against Real Madrid in the Champions League final.

Liverpool come up against Real Madrid in Paris in the final of the Champions League on Saturday.

Should the Reds win at the Stade de France, they will complete the treble. They have already lifted the Carabao Cup and FA Cup this term.

Ancelotti is a managerial genius who should raise more than a few eyebrows

This final comes four years after Liverpool lost 3-1 to Real Madrid in the final in Kyiv.

Merson thinks “the team that scores first will win” on Saturday night. He also believes that Liverpool “have what it takes” to win 2-1:

“I believe Ibrahima Konate will get the nod as he’s better equipped to deal with Benzema and Vinicius due to his pace and strength,” Merson told Sportskeeda.

“Joel Matip is a fantastic player in his own right and is arguably the best at playing out from the back among the Liverpool center-backs, but stylistically, Konate is a better fit for this game.

If Thiago Alcantara is not fit enough to start, I think Klopp could turn to the experience of James Milner ahead of Naby Keita. The Englishman plays it safe and gives a lot more without the ball than Keita, which could swing the argument in his favor. Thiago has to play this game as Liverpool don’t have a player like him and he’s enjoying his best spell at the club since joining in 2020.

“Keeping in mind all the comebacks Real Madrid have pulled off in Europe this season, this is probably a bold call but the team that scores first will win this game. In terms of game management, Ancelotti’s side have a lot of experience in the competition and could use every trick in the book to emerge victorious.

Merson continued: “Real Madrid rely on Benzema a lot more than Liverpool rely on Salah, so I think he should…

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