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Roma in need of another miracle for Liverpool return

For the second round running, Roma must overturn a three-goal away defeat to progress as Liverpool come to the Stadio Olimpico.

Mohamed Salah after scoring his and Liverpool's second goal in the first leg against Roma
Mohamed Salah after scoring his and Liverpool's second goal in the first leg against Roma ©Getty Images

AS Roma are on familiar ground as they welcome Liverpool FC for the second leg of their UEFA Champions League semi-final needing to overturn a three-goal away defeat for the second round in succession.

Liverpool, unbeaten in Europe this season, looked to have taken a firm grip on the tie when Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino each scored twice, and Sadio Mané once, in the first leg at Anfield on 24 April. However, late goals from Edin Džeko and Diego Perotti, a penalty, have given Roma a glimmer of hope for the return leg.

• The Giallorossi, who have not conceded in their five home games in this season's UEFA Champions League, do not have far to look for inspiration having produced their biggest European comeback in the quarter-finals. Beaten 4-1 in the first leg at FC Barcelona, a 3-0 home win took Roma through on away goals; it was the joint second largest first-leg deficit to be overturned in UEFA Champions League history.

• Liverpool, however, are also in a familiar position having beaten Manchester City FC by a three-goal margin in the home first leg of their quarter-final tie; the Reds went through 5-1 on aggregate.

• Roma have featured in only one previous European Cup semi-final, and were victorious – only to lose to Liverpool in the final at their own Stadio Olimpico.

• While this is Liverpool's tenth appearance in the last four of the European Cup, it is the first time the English club have got this far since 2007/08, when they suffered only their second semi-final defeat.

Highlights: Liverpool 5-2 Roma

Previous meetings
• The most significant of the teams' five previous meetings was the first, the 1984 European Cup final in Rome. Phil Neal gave Liverpool a 14th-minute lead, only for Roberto Pruzzo to level two minutes before half-time. With no further goals in the second half or extra time, the game became the first European Cup final to go to penalties and, though Steve Nicol missed with Liverpool's first kick, Bruno Conti and Francesco Graziani failed for Roma, leaving Alan Kennedy to convert the decisive kick in a 4-2 shoot-out success and seal Liverpool's fourth European Cup triumph in eight years.

• The teams at the Stadio Olimpico on 30 May 1984 were:
Roma: Tancredi, Nappi, Nela, Righetti, Bonetti, Toninho Cerezo (Strukelj 55), Di Bartolomei, Falcão, Conti, Pruzzo (Chierico 63), Graziani.
Liverpool: Grobbelaar, Neal, Lawrenson, Hansen, Kennedy, Johnston (Nicol 69), Lee, Souness, Whelan, Dalglish (Robinson 93), Rush.

• Liverpool were also victorious in the sides' only previous two-legged knockout tie. Michael Owen scored twice in the second half (46, 72) in a 2-0 first-leg win at the Stadio Olimpico in the 2000/01 UEFA Cup fourth round, and Liverpool held on despite losing the home second leg to Gianni Guigou's 69th-minute strike, Roma ending with nine men after Damiano Tommasi and Guigou were both sent off late on. The English club went on to win the competition.

• The teams in that first leg at the Stadio Olympico on 15 February 2001 were:
Roma: Antonioli, Cafu, Samuel, Rinaldi, Mangone, Candela, Nakata (Assunção 51), Emerson, Tommasi (Batistuta 66), Delvecchio (Guigou 82), Montella.
Liverpool: Westerveld, Babbel, Henchoz, Hyypiä, Carragher, Hamann, McAllister, Ziege (Šmicer 74), Fowler, Owen (Litmanen 80), Heskey.

Watch goals from Liverpool's 2002 win against Roma

• In the teams' most recent contests, in the 2001/02 UEFA Champions League second group stage, a goalless draw in Rome preceded a 2-0 Liverpool win on Merseyside thanks to goals from Jari Litmanen (7 penalty) and Emile Heskey (64). That took Liverpool into the quarter-finals at Roma's expense.

• The teams at the Stadio Olimpico on 5 December 2001 were:
Roma: Antonioli, Zebina, Samuel, Aldair, Guigou (Assunção 46), Tommasi (Fuser 78), Emerson, Lima, Candela, Totti, Batistuta.
Liverpool: Dudek, Carragher, Henchoz, Hyypiä, Riise, Gerrard (Bišćan 84), Hamann, Murphy (Berger 61), Šmicer (McAllister 63), Owen, Heskey.

• Džeko and Salah scored for Roma in a 2-1 friendly win against Liverpool in St Louis in August 2016. The Italian side had also been victorious 1-0 when the teams met in Boston two years earlier, while in 2004 Liverpool were 2-1 victors in another US friendly in East Rutherford.

Match background

• Roma were victorious in their sole previous European Cup semi-final:
1983/84: W 3-2 Dundee United FC (0-2 a, 3-0 h)

• Roma won their first three two-legged knockout ties against English clubs – but have since lost six out of six. Their last knockout tie against Premier League opposition was a 7-6 loss on penalties to Arsenal FC in the 2008/09 UEFA Champions League round of 16 (0-1 away, 1-0 home).

• The Italian side have already beaten English opposition in Rome this season, Stephan El Shaarawy scoring twice in a 3-0 defeat of Chelsea FC on matchday four; Roma had drawn 3-3 in London two weeks earlier.

De Rossi: We can do it

• Roma's record at home to English clubs is W9 D3 L4, not including that 1984 final loss to Liverpool.

• The Giallorossi have won four of the last five home games against Premier League visitors, the exception a 2-0 loss to Manchester City FC in the 2014/15 group stage.

• Roma reached the last four in dramatic circumstances, overturning a 4-1 first-leg defeat at FC Barcelona with a 3-0 home success to progress on away goals for the second round in succession. It was only the third time a first-leg deficit of three goals or more had been retrieved in the UEFA Champions League era.

• The Italian club are the only team to have won a tie in this season's UEFA Champions League knockout phase after losing the first leg – and have done so twice, having also eliminated FC Shakhtar Donetsk in the round of 16 (1-2 away, 1-0 home).

• Despite winning ties against Shakhtar and Barcelona this season, Roma's aggregate record is W8 L14 when they have been beaten away in the first game. The Shakhtar success ended a run of six straight defeats in such ties.

• Roma have won only six of their last 26 games in the competition (D8 L12), although they have triumphed in five of their last ten. 

• The 2-1 victory at Qarabağ FK on matchday two was Roma's first win in eight UEFA Champions League matches, home and away and including qualifying.

• Despite beating Qarabağ, Chelsea, Shakhtar and Barcelona this season, Roma have won just five of their last 12 home matches in the UEFA Champions League – qualifying included – losing four.

• However, Roma have not conceded a goal at home in their five fixtures in this season's UEFA Champions League.

• Roma's record in four UEFA penalty shoot-outs is W1 L3:
6-7 v Arsenal FC, 2008/09 UEFA Champions League round of 16
3-4 v Real Zaragoza, 1986/87 European Cup Winners' Cup first round
3-4 v Liverpool FC, 1983/84 European Champion Clubs' Cup final
4-2 v IFK Norrköping, 1982/83 UEFA Cup second round

Klopp on 'brilliant' Liverpool

• The Reds' record in European Cup semi-finals is W7 L2:
1964/65: L 3-4 FC Internazionale Milano (3-1 h, 0-3 a)
1976/77: W 6-1 FC Zürich (3-1 a, 3-0 h)
1977/78: W 4-2 VfL Borussia Mönchengladbach (1-2 a, 3-0 h)
1980/81: W 1-1 FC Bayern München, away goals (0-0 h, 1-1 a)
1983/84: W 3-1 FC Dinamo Bucureşti (1-0 h, 2-1 a)
1984/85: W 5-0 Panathinaikos FC (4-0 h, 1-0 a)
2004/05: W 1-0 Chelsea FC (0-0 a, 1-0 h)
2006/07: W 1-1 Chelsea FC, 4-1 on pens (0-1 a, 1-0 h)
2007/08: L 3-4 aet Chelsea FC (1-1 h, 2-3 a)

• Liverpool's 2008 defeat by Chelsea ended a run of seven successive semi-final wins. Their last three semi-finals have all been against Chelsea; this is the first time they have played a semi-final against non-English opposition since 1985.

• Liverpool's overall record in two-legged knockout ties against Italian clubs in UEFA competition is won four, lost two. They have won the last two, most recently against FC Internazionale Milano in the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League round of 16 (2-0 home, 1-0 away).

• The Reds' record in 26 European games against Italian teams is W10 D5 L11. This is their first contest since being paired with Udinese Calcio in the 2012/13 UEFA Europa League group stage, when they lost 3-2 at home before winning 1-0 in Italy thanks to a Jordan Henderson goal.

• That Udinese success means the Reds have lost only one of their last seven away games against Italian clubs, winning three.

Mohamed Salah after scoring for Liverpool
Mohamed Salah after scoring for Liverpool©AFP/Getty Images

• The English club have played five UEFA club competition finals against Italian sides, with the record W0 D2 L3, though the draws – 1-1 against Roma in the 1984 European Cup final, and 3-3 against AC Milan in the 2005 UEFA Champions League final – prompted Liverpool wins on penalties. They lost to Juventus in the 1985 UEFA Super Cup and European Cup final, and to Milan in the UEFA Champions League in 2007.

• Liverpool were 7-0 winners at NK Maribor on matchday three, their club record European away victory. They also won 5-0 at FC Porto in the round of 16 first leg, going through by the same aggregate score. Manchester City were then overcome in the quarter-finals, Liverpool winning 3-0 at Anfield and 2-1 away.

• Defeated just once in their last 13 European away fixtures, Liverpool have nevertheless won just five of their last 18 (D8 L5) – albeit four of six this season – having drawn 1-1 at FC Spartak Moskva and let slip a 3-0 half-time lead to draw 3-3 at Sevilla FC in this season's group stage. Before triumphing at TSG 1899 Hoffenheim in their play-off first leg, the Merseysiders' last away success had been a 1-0 UEFA Europa League group stage win at FC Rubin Kazan on 5 November 2015.

• Liverpool have triumphed in 30 UEFA competition ties when they have won the home first leg – including that tie against City this season – and lost only five. Four of those aggregate losses came after a one-goal margin in the home first leg; the exception was the 1964/65 European Cup semi-final against FC Internazionale Milano, when a 3-1 home win was overturned by a 3-0 reverse in Italy.

• The Reds have therefore won all five ties in which they triumphed by a three-goal margin at home first time out.

• Liverpool's record in four UEFA penalty shoot-outs is W3 L1:
4-5 v Beşiktaş JK, 2014/15 UEFA Europa League round of 32
4-1 v Chelsea FC, 2006/07 UEFA Champions League semi-final
3-2 v AC Milan, 2004/05 UEFA Champions League final
4-2 v AS Roma, 1983/84 European Champion Clubs' Cup final

Can Roma do it again? Great UEFA Champions League comebacks

Coach and player links
• Salah was a Roma player between 2015 and 2017, when he departed for Liverpool. He scored 29 league goals in his two seasons with the Giallorossi, a total he has already surpassed with his new club.

• Salah was at ACF Fiorentina in 2014/15, but did not play against Roma.

• Džeko scored three goals in 11 games against Liverpool during his four-and-a-half seasons at Manchester City FC, but none of them came in a victory. His overall record against the Reds was three wins, four draws and four defeats.

• Federico Fazio (Tottenham Hotspur FC, 2014–16) and Aleksandar Kolarov (Manchester City, 2010–17) also have Premier League experience.

• Džeko was in the City team that lost 1-0 away and drew 1-1 at home to Jürgen Klopp's Borussia Dortmund in the 2012/13 UEFA Champions League group stage.

• Džeko scored three goals in five Bundesliga games against Klopp's Dortmund for VfL Wolfsburg, including two in a 3-0 victory on 12 May 2009.

• Daniele De Rossi's Italy defeated an England side including James Milner and Henderson on penalties in the UEFA EURO 2012 quarter-finals.

Edin Džeko after scoring Roma's first goal at Anfield
Edin Džeko after scoring Roma's first goal at Anfield©AFP/Getty Images

• De Rossi and Italy also beat England 2-1 in the 2014 FIFA World Cup group stage; Henderson and Adam Lallana featured.

• Henderson, Lallana and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain faced Roma's Lorenzo Pellegrini as England and Italy shared a 1-1 friendly draw at Wembley on 27 March.

• Džeko was on target in Bosnia-Herzegovina's 5-0 victory against an Estonia side featuring Ragnar Klavan in qualifying for the 2018 World Cup in September 2016.

• International team-mates:
Radja Nainggolan & Simon Mignolet (Belgium)
Alisson & Roberto Firmino (Brazil)
Kevin Strootman, Rick Karsdorp & Virgil van Dijk, Georginio Wijnaldum (Netherlands)

• Have played together:
Kevin Strootman & Georginio Wijnaldum (PSV Eindhoven, 2011–13)
Aleksandar Kolarov, Edin Džeko & James Milner (Manchester City FC, 2010–15)
Federico Fazio, Diego Perotti & Alberto Moreno (Sevilla FC, 2011–14)

Match facts

• Roma's four-game unbeaten run in all competitions ended at Anfield – the first time they had conceded five goals in a game since going down 6-1 at FC Barcelona on 24 November 2015.

• Roma were 4-1 victors at home to AC Chievo Verona on Saturday and have won five of their last six home matches, losing the other. Overall at home this season Roma's record is W15 D2 L7.

• Eusebio Di Francesco's side have scored three or more goals eight times at home so far this season.

• Roma have kept clean sheets in three of their last six home matches, having not managed one in the previous six. They have recorded ten clean sheets in 24 home fixtures in 2017/18, including in all five UEFA Champions League outings.

• Nine of the 28 Serie A goals Roma have conceded this season have come in the final 15 minutes.

• Cengiz Ünder scored his sixth Serie A goal in the 2-1 win against Genoa CFC on 18 April; all have come in his last ten appearances. The 20-year-old Turkish forward is yet to complete 90 minutes for Roma.

• Edin Džeko scored his 71st and 72nd goals for Roma in all competitions against Chievo, his 135th game for the club. It took his tally this term to 23 – 16 in Serie A and seven in the UEFA Champions League, in which he has scored in his last four appearances. The Bosnian striker is the first player to score 50 goals in the Bundesliga, Premier League and Serie A.

• On 17 April, Luca Pellegrini renewed his contract with the Giallorossi until 2022.

• Diego Perotti (twisted left ankle) and Kevin Strootman (chest) both suffered injuries during the first leg and missed the Chievo game.

• Grégoire Defrel has not played since 7 April having subsequently twisted his left ankle in training.

• Rick Karsdorp has been sidelined since October and has undergone an operation following his second serious knee injury of the season.

• On 13 April, Di Francesco won the 2018 edition of the Enzo Bearzot award, given annually to Italian coaches, beating Simone Inzaghi and Roberto Mancini.

• This is Liverpool's 100th game in the UEFA Champions League, group stage to final. They are the 18th club to reach that landmark, and the fourth from England. Their record is W47 D30 L22.

• Liverpool are the top scorers in this season's UEFA Champions League with 38 goals, also a record for an English club; Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino (both ten goals) and Sadio Mané (eight) have contributed 28 of those.

• The Reds' tally of 38 goals is the third highest total for a UEFA Champions League season, behind Real Madrid CF's 41 (2013/14), a record for a 13-match season, and FC Barcelona, who scored 45 in 2002/03 – although Barcelona played 16 games that season. Liverpool's 11-match average of 3.45 goals per game is higher than both sides.

• James Milner provided his ninth assist in this season's UEFA Champions League in the first leg, setting a new competition record.

• Liverpool's away record this season is W13 D7 L5. They have lost only one of their last eight fixtures away from home, winning five.

• Liverpool have scored in 19 of their last 21 away matches in all competitions. Overall Klopp's side have failed to find the net in just four of their 25 away matches in 2017/18.

• Held 0-0 at home by Stoke City FC on Saturday, Liverpool have failed to score in only four of their last 26 matches in all competitions, home and away.

• The Reds have lost only one of their last 17 games in all competitions, winning 11.

• Mohamed Salah has scored 22 goals in his last 20 appearances for Liverpool. The Egyptian has 31 Premier League goals in 34 appearances this season and 43 goals in all competitions – the highest total for a Liverpool player since Ian Rush's club record of 47 set in 1983/84.

• Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has been ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering knee ligament damage in the first leg.

• Adam Lallana came on as a substitute at Crystal Palace FC on 31 March but lasted only five minutes before being replaced due to a hamstring injury. Joël Matip picked up a thigh injury in the same game; neither has played since.

• Emre Can has been sidelined since 17 March with a back injury.

• Nathaniel Clyne made his first appearance since 21 May 2017 at Everton FC on 7 April after a long-standing back injury.

• On 22 April, Salah was named the Professional Football Association's Player of the Year.