Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is relishing the chance to pit his wits against Villarreal manager Unai Emery in the semi-finals of the Champions League after his side made it past Benfica in the last eight.
The Reds were held to a thrilling 3-3 draw by Nelson Verissimo‘s side at Anfield in Wednesday’s second leg but managed to progress 6-4 on aggregate after a 3-1 first-leg win at the Estadio da Luz.
Villarreal now await Liverpool in the semi-finals after knocking out Juventus and Bayern Munich, and Klopp has hailed Emery’s “unbelievable” work with the La Liga club.
“If I could do an analysis of Villarreal right now that would be very strange. I saw the results, the game was very impressive,” Klopp told BT Sport after Wednesday’s victory.
“I only picked up pieces but to beat Juventus and Bayern Munich they deserve to be in the Champions League semi-finals. Unai Emery is the king of the cups, it is unbelievable what he is doing. But give me a bit of time to prepare it properly.”
Liverpool also equalled a European Cup/Champions League record for English clubs first set by Manchester United after reaching the semi-finals for the 12th time.
Klopp’s side will welcome Villarreal to Anfield for the first leg of their semi-final tie on April 27 before visiting the Ceramica for the second leg one week later.