Klopp hails 'genius' Alexander-Arnold after Liverpool slay Barcelona

Trent Alexander-Arnold's "genius" contribution won plaudits from Jurgen Klopp after Liverpool's sensational 4-0 Champions League semi-final win over Barcelona.

Nursing a 3-0 deficit from last week's first leg and missing star forwards Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino, Liverpool sprung into action at Anfield and hit the front through Divock Origi after seven minutes.

A quickfire double by half-time substitute Georginio Wijnaldum had the tie remarkably all square before the hour and Alexander-Arnold's quick thinking created Origi's decisive final salvo.

Shaping to jog away from a right-wing corner, the England right-back darted back towards the ball and arrowed in a low cross that was emphatically smashed home by Origi as Barcelona's defenders groggily looked on.

"We thought our performance was better than 3-0 at Barca, and Barca were better than 4-0 here," Klopp told a post-match news conference.

"We all know you need luck in this situation or a genius moment like Trent Alexander-Arnold.

"I saw the ball in the net and didn't know who had taken the corner, it was too quick for me. Oh my God – genius."

Manchester City's win over Leicester City on Monday meant Liverpool faced ending a phenomenal season at home and abroad with nothing tangible to show for their efforts.

However, even with the odds stacked against his players, Klopp felt their unbending mental strength could give them a chance against Lionel Messi and colleagues.

"I said to the boys before the game, 'I don't think it's possible but because it's you, so we have a chance'. We really are mentality giants," he said.

"If you go out there and ask who bet a penny on us I don't think you would find a lot of people. To go out there and put in a performance like this is unbelievable. What they did was so special."

Klopp also paid tribute to the Anfield faithful for their contribution on a raucous, unforgettable evening.

Asked whether such a win would have been possible in an empty stadium, he replied: "No chance.

"We know this is the club that makes atmosphere, emotion, desire and football quality. If you cut off one it doesn't work. We know that, I've said it before.

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Liverpool beat Barcelona: The greatest comeback ever?
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Liverpool beat Barcelona: The greatest comeback ever?
Liverpool pose for a team photo during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Barcelona fans show support for their team in the stands
Liverpool's Andrew Robertson (left) pushes Barcelona's Lionel Messi as he is sat on the pitcj
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Barcelona and Liverpool line up prior to the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Andrew Robertson (left) and Barcelona's Lionel Messi (right) battle for the ball
Liverpool's Jordan Henderson (left) celebrates after Liverpool's Divock Origi (right) scores his side's first goal of the game
Liverpool's Divock Origi celebrates scoring his side's first goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Barcelona's Luis Suarez during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Jordan Henderson (14) has a shot on goal moments before team-mate Divock Origi (not in picture) scores his side's first goal of the game
Liverpool's Divock Origi (left) scores his side's first goal of the game
Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk(left) and Barcelona's Lionel Messi battle for the ball during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Barcelona's Luis Suarez goes to ground after challenging for the ball with Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk (left)
Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk (left) and Andrew Robertson during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Barcelona's Philippe Coutinho takes a corner
Liverpool's Andrew Robertson has a shot on goal during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Barcelona's Jordi Alba (right) has a chance on goal saved by Liverpool's goalkeeper Alisson
Liverpool's Virgil van Dijk has a shot on goal during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum scores his side's third goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum scores his side's second goal of the game
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum scores his side's third goal of the game
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum scores his side's third goal of the game
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum celebrates scoring his side's second goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum tries to retrieve the ball from Barcelona's Marc-Andre ter Stegen after scoring his sides second goal during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum celebrates scoring his side's third goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum celebrates scoring his side's third goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum celebrates scoring his side's third goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum celebrates scoring his side's third goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Divock Origi scores his side's fourth goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Divock Origi scores his side's fourth goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Divock Origi celebrates scoring his side's fourth goal of the game
Liverpool's Divock Origi celebrates scoring his side's fourth goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Divock Origi celebrates scoring his side's fourth goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Divock Origi (right) celebrates scoring his side's fourth goal of the game during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
The scoreboard shows Liverpool 4-0 Barcelona during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Barcelona's Lionel Messi looks dejected during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Barcelona's Luis Suarez looks dejected during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp gestures on the touchline during the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Georginio Wijnaldum celebrates after the final whistle
Liverpool's Mohamed Salah (left) and manager Jurgen Klopp celebrate after the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp (centre) and Virgil van Dijk (right) celebrate after the final whistle
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp (left) and Virgil van Dijk (centre) celebrate after the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp celebrates after the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp (fourth right), Mohamed Salah (fifth right) and Virgil van Dijk (third right) celebrate after the final whistle
Liverpool's Fabinho (left) and Virgil van Dijk celebrate after the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool's Trent Alexander-Arnold reacts after the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp celebrates after the final whistle
A general view as Liverpool players celebrate in front of the fans in the stands
Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet (left), Fabinho (second left), Roberto Firmino (second right), and Rafael Camacho (right) celebrate after the final whistle
Liverpool celebrate after the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, second leg match at Anfield, Liverpool.
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"This club has a big heart and tonight it was obviously [beating] like crazy. It was pounding, you could hear it and feel it all over the world."

Liverpool were beaten 3-1 by Real Madrid in last season's final in Kiev, where Salah departed with a shoulder injury inflicted by a first-half challenge from Sergio Ramos.

Klopp conceded that outing, which was undone by two dreadful errors by goalkeeper Loris Karius and a Gareth Bale wondergoal, left a sense of unfinished business.

"After last year we felt we have to go back. We cannot let it stand like this," he added. "Now we get another chance and we will go for this.

"This club touches you like crazy. I love it."

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