Now that Flamengo have won both the Brazilian League and the Copa Libertadores, all of their expectations are about the Club World Cup.
The Brazilian press aren’t really worried about the tournament’s semifinals, even though the likes of Internacional and Atletico Mineiro have failed to reach the final before.
The media really wants to talk about the possible game against Liverpool. And since Rafinha was invited to Sportv last night, he spoke a lot about his experience against the Reds and Jurgen Klopp.
During his years at Bayern Munich, the fullback played many times against Klopp’s Borussia Dortmund. And this year, he’s also been knocked out by Liverpool in the Champions League Round-of-16.
Rafinha has made it clear he considers Liverpool to be on a higher level, but still thinks it’s possible that Flamengo could get a win if they use their full potential.
“We have to be realistic. We are fine now, but they are very much ahead of us. I faced their team in the knockout stages of the Champions League. They are very fast. It’s a final, a single game. If we play like we’re playing, we compete. Without fear and with respect,” Rafinha told Sportv.
“But they are in front of us, they are. We have to be realistic. They didn’t reach two Champions League finals for nothing. But the final is a game only and it’s details which decide it.
“Both have a very similar style. I faced Klopp a lot in Germany. There is a lot of talk about Liverpool, Firmino, Salah, Mané attacking, but they (those who talk about the club) don’t pay attention to the wings. In every move, they participate. At Dortmund, it was the same thing. Lewandowski who scored the goals, but it’s others who prepared. The way he worked in Germany he took to Liverpool.”