Former Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana has admitted that he felt like a ‘rabbit in the headlights’ during his cameo in the 2018 Champions League final.
The Reds lost to Real Madrid in the showpiece in Kyiv three years ago on what a heartbreaking night for Jurgen Klopp and his players. Liverpool were actually the better team for much of the first half, but Mohamed Salah’s injury put paid to their chances and they were eventually beaten 3-1.
Lallana admits he was ‘petrified’ in Kyiv
“Looking back now, I was petrified. Maybe petrified is a bit of a strong word, but looking back I feel like I’m in a position now where I can maybe say that.
“I had a terrible year, it was my first year when it was kind of one injury after another, and I just couldn’t find any sort of rhythm in terms of being on the pitch.
“So I’d just come back from a big, big hamstring injury, I think I’d played 15 minutes of the last game of the [Premier League] season, and I just had no rhythm, no form.
“We’d lost the Champions League final, and I remember kind of after it finished just being relieved I got through the game.
“I couldn’t get near anyone. I couldn’t get near Modric, I couldn’t get near anyone. I was just running around. I felt like a rabbit in the headlights.”
Transfer Tavern take
It is both refreshing and sad to hear the 32-year-old speak with such honesty, highlighting just how crucial confidence is to a player’s form and effectiveness.
Injuries proved to be Lallana’s downfall so many times at Liverpool – he was limited to 178 appearances across six years, at an average of less than 30 per campaign, in all competitions – and in the end, he arguably never reached his full potential at Anfield, where he was regarded as a fans’ favourite.
Asking him to thrive in that final after playing so little football in 2017/18, up against world-class players, was always asking too much.
In other news, some Liverpool fans have been reacting to a Real Madrid injury update ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League clash at Anfield. Read more here.
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